Chronic Skin Disease and Risk of Infection
Anne Braae Olesen*
Identifiers and Pagination:Year: 2012
First Page: 60
Last Page: 64
Publisher Id: TOIDJ-6-60
Article History:Received Date: 5/12/2011
Revision Received Date: 21/5/2012
Acceptance Date: 15/7/2012
Electronic publication date: 02/10/2012
Collection year: 2012
open-access license: This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International Public License (CC-BY 4.0), a copy of which is available at: https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/legalcode. This license permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.
In this paper, we review the existing knowledge on the risk of infections in chronic skin disease. The normal skin is a major physiological barrier to most microorganisms. In patients with chronic skin diseases the epidermal barrier function is disrupted and the concentration of antimicrobial peptides may be reduced. Several case series and case-control studies of selected hospitalized patients confirm a high risk of colonization with S. aureus and cutaneous infections among patients with atopic dermatitis, psoriasis, and erythroderma. Cellulitis is a common secondary skin infection associated with leg ulcer, varicose veins, lymphedema, tinea pedis, and leg dermatoses. Pox, Human papilloma, and Herpes viruses, some dermatophytes and candida albicans often give rise to secondary skin infections in chronic skin disease. Concerning infection of other organs than the skin, a few studies have shown that atopic dermatitis patients are more prone to upper and lower respiratory tract infection. One study of severe psoriasis patients has shown increased mortality due to infections. Patients with chronic skin disease may have more severe infections with prolonged periods of antibiotic treatments and worse prognosis compared with skin healthy controls, but more data from population-based studies including detailed data on relevant risk factors and confounders is needed.