Nursing is making a key contribution to the development and evaluation of atopic dermatitis (AD) education. Educational interventions have long been recommended and used as a critical adjunct at all levels of therapy for patients with AD to enhance therapy effectiveness. These interventions may be directed toward adult patients or the parent/caregiver or child with eczema. Education should be individualized and includes teaching about the chronic or relapsing nature of AD, exacerbating factors, and therapeutic options with benefits, risks, and realistic expectations. This important educational facet of care management is becoming increasingly difficult to accomplish in routine care visits and seems to be equally difficult to measure and evaluate. A limited number of studies to date suggest effectiveness of educational approaches to improve the management of AD. We recommend that an international priority be given to assessing the effects of patient and parental education by nurses and other care providers in AD management using research studies designed to address the common weaknesses of existing randomized studies and the relative benefits of different strategies.
Copyright 2010. Published by Elsevier Inc.