Dermatitis May Not Influence Bone Density in Children

Topical corticosteroid use, too, seems to have no negative impact

MONDAY, Nov. 29 (HealthDay News) -- There appears to be no correlation between low bone mineral density (BMD) and atopic dermatitis in children, and use of topical corticosteroids in children with atopic dermatitis is not associated with a decrease in BMD, according to a study published in the November issue of the Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology.

Sara Gertrudes Anna van Velsen, M.D., of the University Medical Center in Utrecht, Netherlands, and colleagues measured lumbar spine BMD in 60 children with moderate to severe atopic dermatitis to determine the prevalence of low BMD in this population and to study the relationship between BMD and corticosteroid and cyclosporine use.

The researchers found low BMD in three patients (5 percent) and osteoporosis in one (1.7 percent). The prevalence of low BMD was not significantly different from that which could be expected in the general population, and the topical use of corticosteroids did not appear to decrease BMD. Children treated with oral corticosteroids and/or cyclosporine in addition to topical/inhalation/nasal corticosteroids in the past five years tended toward lower BMD, but the difference was not significant.

"Low BMD did not occur more frequently in this population of children with moderate to severe atopic dermatitis compared with the general population. Use of topical corticosteroids in the previous five years was not associated with a decrease in BMD," the authors write.

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