Severe Atopic Dermatitis Could Heighten Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma Risk

This year, the American Academy of Dermatology (AAD) Annual Meeting took place from March 25-29, 2022. During the meeting, researchers and stakeholders discussed trends and research within the field of dermatology. According to the American Journal of Managed Care (AJMC), one presentation centered around the relationship between severe atopic dermatitis and cancer risk. In the presentation abstract, researchers found that those with severe atopic dermatitis could be at a greater risk of developing certain types of cancer, with lymphoma at the top of the list. 

The Study

So why did researchers choose to focus on the intersection of severe atopic dermatitis and cancer? Well, some prior studies have hypothesized that immunologic dysfunction – linked to atopic dermatitis – could also cause a heightened cancer risk. 

Within this study, the research team evaluated data from 409,431 children with atopic dermatitis (and 1,809,029 controls) and 625,083 adults with atopic dermatitis (and 2,678,888 controls). Findings from the study show that:

  • Pediatric patients with moderate-to-severe atopic dermatitis had a 71% higher risk of developing lymphoma than children who do not have atopic dermatitis. 
  • Adults with severe atopic dermatitis were at a 19% greater risk of developing lymphoma than those without atopic dermatitis. 
  • Moderate atopic dermatitis was associated with a lesser risk of breast, bladder, colon, prostate, and lung cancer. 

About Severe Atopic Dermatitis

Atopic dermatitis, a chronic inflammatory condition, is considered to be the most common form of eczema, affecting millions of people within the United States. A mix of environmental and genetic factors contribute to severe atopic dermatitis. In many cases, triggers such as infections, stress, cold air, or irritating chemicals can worsen severe atopic dermatitis. This condition causes itchy, dry skin which often weeps a clear fluid when scratched. Symptoms can include:

  • Dry skin
  • Skin inflammation
  • Intense itchiness
  • Increased risk of skin infections
  • Lichenification (thickening and discoloration of the skin)
Jessica Lynn

Jessica Lynn

Jessica Lynn has an educational background in writing and marketing. She firmly believes in the power of writing in amplifying voices, and looks forward to doing so for the rare disease community.

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