26 November 2020
Allergy, Other Diseases
- Patient Evidence, - Healthcare, - Quality of Life

Representing European atopic eczema patients, EFA took part in the annual  Congress of the European Academy of Dermatology and Venerology (EADV) that was ran virtually from 29-31 October. The Congress gathered patient organisations, medical professionals and more to share the latest advancements in skin care, including inflammatory skin diseases, such as atopic dermatitis, and paediatric dermatology among other topics.

Living with eczema 24/7

EFA held a session that was broadcasted live on the 29th October and available on our YouTube channel. The session discussed caring for atopic eczema, by exploring the realities and the socio-economic burden of living with the condition, or caring for someone with atopic eczema.

Asking “How do YOU care for atopic eczema?”, the theme of World Atopic Eczema Day 2020, the session centred around the experience of living with atopic eczema for children with the disease and their families.

After an introduction by EFA board member Carla Jones and incoming president of EADV Professor Alexander Stratigos, we heard from Magali Redding, a carer for her child with atopic eczema and CEO of Eczema Outreach Support, on the challenges of caring for children with atopic eczema.  Then, Professor Carsten Flohr presented best practices in caring for atopic eczema, including the importance of a good relationship between the patient and doctor.

Atopic eczema complicates childhood and adolescence

During the session, different challenges faced by children with atopic eczema were discussed. It was highlighted that children with atopic eczema face two “danger transitional zones”: school and adolescence, as these periods in life can be a struggle when also managing atopic eczema. It was reported that on average 1 out of 5 children with atopic eczema are bullied in school, and up to 90% experience trouble sleeping.

Finally, a roundtable discussion went into detail about the challenges and opportunities in creating patient-centred care for atopic eczema to improve quality of life for patients and caregivers.

An impressive 395 participants attended our session and asked a broad range of questions from the use of topical steroids or TCA, the benefits of vitamin D, and the careful monitoring of treatments. There was a clear interest in how a holistic approach to treatment to support young patients is essential.

EADV hosted many more sessions on atopic dermatitis. One session covered “Women Leaders in Dermatology: Exploring Leadership Paths”. It brought together an expert panel to share insight on topics to support women dermatologists such as mentorship and leadership roles.

Other sessions explored treatments for atopic eczema, including steroid-free topical treatments as a tailored approach for milder cases of atopic eczema. Another session looked at the pathophysiology of inflammation, pruritus and skin barrier defects in atopic eczema, and its implications for future treatment.

Despite the online format of the congress, there was still a virtual patient exhibition where EFA hosted a booth with more information on World Atopic Eczema Day. Visitors could learn about EFA’s advocacy work for people with atopic eczema, and all people living with allergy and airways diseases. At the virtual booth EFA exhibited our podcast series from World Atopic Eczema Day 2020, and our #AtopicalLives video.

You can watch the recording of EFA’s live session here and consult the programme here.