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July 1998

Atopic Dermatitis: A Question of Balance

Arch Dermatol. 1998;134(7):870-871. doi:10.1001/archderm.134.7.870

ATOPIC DERMATITIS (AD) is characterized by chronic skin inflammation, which can result in significant morbidity and impact on quality of life.1 Topical corticosteroids are currently the most common treatment for AD. However, in a subset of patients, the therapeutic response to these agents is unsatisfactory. In addition, long-term use of topical corticosteroids may be associated with unacceptable adverse effects. Since AD is associated with a number of immunoregulatory abnormalities,2 therapy directed toward correction of the immune dysfunction represents a rational alternative for those patients with conditions unresponsive to conventional therapies. Alternative treatment modalities would be especially useful for patients in whom corticosteroid resistance could be contributing to treatment failure.3