Risk:benefit ratio is important in treating atopic dermatitis

BMJ 2002; 325 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.325.7370.970 (Published 26 October 2002) Cite this as: BMJ 2002;325:970
  1. B Roger Allen (brallen1@aol.com), consultant dermatologist,
  2. Thomas A Luger (luger@uni-muenster.de)
  1. Department of Dermatology, University Hospital, Queen's Medical Centre, Nottingham NG11 6QU
  2. Department of Dermatology, Westphalian Wilhelms-University of Münster, Von-Esmarch-Strasse 56, D-48149 Münster, Germany

    EDITOR—Williams acknowledges the efficacy of tacrolimus and pimecrolimus in atopic dermatitis but subsequently his editorial is negative and lacks any patient perspective.1 The issue lies not in clinicians' disembodied comparisons of efficacy but in what treatment provides patients, or their affected children, with the most acceptable benefit : risk ratio.

    Only 40% of patients with eczema are reportedly satisfied with their treatment, and work from Williams's own department has shown that in many cases using a topical corticosteroid produces risks, especially of …

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