S.D. Smith , A. Lee , A. Blaszczynski , G. Fischer
Background: Atopic dermatitis is the most common paediatric
dermatology condition with topical corticosteroids
(TCS) critical in its management. Treatment adherence
issues lead to poor outcomes. Dermatologists play a key role
to educate parent/patients about the use, safety and efﬁcacy
Objectives: To assess current attitudes and experience of
practicing dermatologist about the use and safety of TCS in
managing paediatric atopic dermatitis (pAD).
Methods: 455 Australian-based practicing dermatologist
surveyed at the Australasian College of Dermatologists
(ACD) Annual Scientiﬁc Meeting May 2014 and two subsequent
follow up emails. The survey assessed as to their
attitude towards the use and safety of TCS in treatment pAD.
Results: Overall response rate was 43.5% (198 out of 455).
Of the completed survey’s, 98.9% were ﬁlled completely
with participant responses excluded if there was no answer,
or if there were multiple answers.
Of responders, 52% write 6–10 for TCS daily. Dermatologists
prescribe potent (17.7%) or superpotent (80.3%) as
their strongest TCS. Perioriﬁcial dermatitis (69.2%) was the
most common side effect sighted with only 5.6% sighting
cutaneous atrophy. The surveyed dermatologist state pharmacists
(64.2%) are the most common source of TCS
phobia. The majority (75.8%) strongly agree with the statement
that if used as directed at an appropriate dose and
time for skin site and severity of disease, topical
corticosteroids are very unlikely to cause cutaneous
atrophy. Furthermore, 50.5% strongly agree with the statement
that the term sparingly should not be written on the
label of prescribed tubes of topical corticosteroid
Conclusions: The experience dermatologists have with
TCS enables them to educate parent/patients about the use
and safety of TCS and dispelling the fears about TCS. This
protects parent/patients from misinformation from pharmacists
who are seen as the main contributor patient/
parent TCS phobia.