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Sleep disturbance common among patients with skin disease

Photo by benzoix via Freepik

More than two-fifths (42%) of patients with skin disease experience sleep disturbances, according to an international study presented at the European Academy of Dermatology and Venereology (EADV) Congress 2023 in Berlin.

A press release from the EADV describes how the ALL PROJECT, a comprehensive international research initiative, analyzed more than 50,000 adults across 20 countries to assess the impact of skin diseases.

Notably, the researchers found these sleep disturbances have broader implications for patients' quality of life. Nearly half (49%) of patients with skin disease reported reduced productivity at work, in contrast with just one in five (19%) participants without a skin disease.

The main symptoms that impacted the sleep of patients with skin disease were itching (60%) and burning sensations or tingling (17%). Patients more frequently experienced a feeling of fatigue as soon as they woke up (81% vs. 64% in the non-skin disease population), periods of drowsiness during the day (83% vs. 71%), tingling sensations in the eyes (58% vs. 42%) and repeated yawning (72% vs. 58%) than those who did not have a skin disease.

“Our study is the first to uncover the profound impact of sleep disturbances on the physical functioning of patients with skin disease, and these findings underscore the critical need for early detection and effective management of sleep disturbances,” said the study’s lead author, Dr. Charles Taieb, in the release.

Dr. Taieb is the head of the organization European Market Maintenance Assessment, which set up and managed the ALL PROJECT. He is also the Associate Editor of the Journal of the European Academy of Dermatology and Venereology’s CP Patient page.

Study author Dr. Bruno Halioua added: “Moving forward, healthcare providers should be encouraged to integrate sleep disturbance questions into the examinations of patients with skin conditions to foster a more comprehensive understanding of the impact of skin diseases. Ultimately, the ALL PROJECT aims to spotlight the impact of skin diseases and associated patient experiences so we can mitigate these adverse effects and improve the quality of life for patients.”

Dr. Halioua is a dermatologist practicing in Paris.


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