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  • New therapeutic option in eczema

    New therapeutic options for atopic eczema are being sought at the Department of Dermatology and Allergology at the University of Debrecen. Research has found that, in the treatment of the frequent skin disease, immunotherapy for hay fever can be effective.

    One type of eczema is atopic dermatitis, which is most commonly associated with allergic inflammation. This is one of the most common skin diseases: in both Europe and Hungary, it affects almost 20 percent of people under 18.

    This disease typically begins in childhood, but symptoms may also appear in adulthood. The chronic disease often disappears at the age of 20 but may require lifelong treatment and regular control in many cases. One of the most exciting challenges for medical science is the development of a therapy which not only brings symptomatic relief but also completes healing to people suffering from the unpleasant skin disease.

    - The most common symptoms are dry skin and itching with wavering intensity, which the patients try to relieve by scratching the skin, but by doing so they can ruin the protective function of the skin, which can also penetrate allergens and microbes. It also plays a role in scratched wounds becoming over-inflammatory, the development of further inflammations, and may also trigger immune reactions. However, there may also be other atopic illnesses, Krisztián Gáspár told hirek.unideb.hu

    An Assistant Professor of Dermatology and Allergology at the University of Debrecen examining tissue rejuvenation in 2013 confirmed that asthma-like processes may occur at atopic dermatitis. Research currently being conducted by Dr. Andrea Szegedi, Head of Department and Krisztián Gaspar, focuses on studying the effect of a new therapeutic method in atopic dermatitis on the skin.

    The research group studied the effects of using allergen-specific immunotherapy in atopic dermatitis, which was previously proven to be effective and used as causal therapy in hay fever and mild asthma. Unique research was conducted with patients who had atopic dermatitis in addition to hay fever.

    -We were curious to find out how immunotherapy, which is suitable for treating hay fever, affects eczema, what changes it can make in the skin's physicochemical defense function; in addition, we have also tested the mechanisms of immunological effects, the professor said.

    The results of the three-year research will be published in the near future, but partial results have been presented at several European conferences.

    - Based on the results so far, it can be said that hay fever symptoms have improved after half a year, and there has been a significant change in the condition of allergic processes in the skin. Furthermore, loss of water through the skin has been reduced, resulting in reduced dryness and inflammation. Overall, there have been changes that really prove the beneficial effect of immunotherapy – Krisztián Gáspár said, summarizing the results of the research.

    He added that theoretically there is a possibility of total healing and their results could be another step towards implementing the use of causal therapy.

    According to the expert, due to the complex processes in the background of the development of atopic dermatitis, the treatment itself is also complex, and it must be effective on several points to have a truly effective result. In addition, he encourages patients to be open and ask their doctor about new therapies as the Dermatology Clinic continually provides them with the opportunity to discover new therapies and try out the latest medicines.

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