Front cover image for Quality of life in patients with seborrhoeic dermatitis in KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa Quality of life in patients with seborrhoeic dermatitis in KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa.
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Background: In developing countries, the quality of life (QOL) of skin diseases has rarely been investigated. This is the first study in South Africa (SA) that assesses the quality of life of patients presenting with seborrhoeic dermatitis, correlating clinical severity and demographic parameters. Methods: Consenting participants over the age of 18 years, with a clinical diagnosis of seborrhoeic dermatitis, were invited to take part in the study. QOL was assessed using the Dermatology Life Quality Index (DLQI). The severity of the condition was assessed by a clinician. Results: A total of 45 patients were included in the study. The median Severity Score was 24 and the median DLQI score was 17, which equates to a “very large effect on the quality of life”. Demographic parameters do play a significant role when comparing QOL between patients. The QOL varied depending on gender, educational level, ethnic origin, home language, marital status, residence, HIV status and site of involvement. Limitations: Small number of patients included in the study. Data collected at a single public hospital, thus may not be fully representative of our population. The protocol did not allow for capturing drug related and, in the management, the discontinuation of possibly offending drugs was not included. Conclusion: This study highlights that QOL tools are valuable in providing a patient’s own perspective of their debilitating skin condition.