SOURCE: Kantor R, Kim A, Thyssen JP, Silverberg JI. Association of atopic dermatitis with smoking: A systematic review and meta-analysis. J Am Acad Dermatol 2016;75:1119-1125.

Atopic dermatitis is a chronic, often lifelong disorder affecting people of all ages. In addition to troublesome cosmetic effects, the pruritus of atopic dermatitis has been demonstrated to be extremely disruptive to sleep in children, and often requires systemic antihistamine treatment for control.

A lifelong requirement for periodic treatment with topical steroids and/or topical calcineurin inhibitors (e.g., pimecrolimus, tacrolimus) is not uncommon for mild-to-moderate sufferers. Severe atopic dermatitis may require systemic treatments, including immune modifiers such as cyclosporine.

Smoking has been demonstrated to be associated with atopic dermatitis. The association was found to be statistically significant in children and adults. Of particular concern, smoking in the home was associated with atopic dermatitis in passively exposed children.

There is some predictability within families with an atopic diathesis (i.e., common presence of atopic disorders such as asthma, allergic rhinitis, and eczema) that children are more likely to develop atopic dermatitis. In addition to the many other good reasons to stop smoking, we can add an increased incidence of atopic dermatitis.