Loss of Work Productivity and Quality of Life in Patients With Autoimmune Bullous Dermatoses

J Cutan Med Surg. 2015 Nov-Dec;19(6):546-54. doi: 10.1177/1203475415582317. Epub 2015 Apr 17.


Background: Little is known about quality of life and work productivity in autoimmune bullous dermatoses (AIBDs).

Objective: To determine the impact of AIBDs on quality of life and work productivity.

Methods: An observational cross-sectional study took place between February and May 2013 at an AIBD tertiary referral centre. Ninety-four patients were included. All participants completed the Dermatology Life Quality Index and the Work Productivity and Activity Impairment-Specific Health Problem questionnaires.

Results: Responders to treatment had less impairment (P<.001) than nonresponders. Patients with severe AIBD had significantly more impairment that those with mild (P<.001) and moderate (P=.002) AIBD. Greater impairment was associated with higher percentage of work missed. Those with a higher Dermatology Life Quality Index score had greater work impairment and overall activity impairment (P=.041, P=.024). Nonresponders had increased impairment while working (P<.001), overall work impairment (P<.001), and activity impairment (P<.001). Severely affected patients had worse impairment in all Work Productivity and Activity Impairment Questionnaire domains.

Conclusions: AIBD has the potential to be a large burden on ability to work and quality of life. Larger studies are needed to clarify how these domains change over time and whether or not they improve with treatment.

Keywords: Dermatology Life Quality Index; Work Productivity and Activity Impairment; autoimmune bullous disorders; quality of life.

Publication types

  • Observational Study

MeSH terms

  • Absenteeism*
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Autoimmune Diseases / complications*
  • Autoimmune Diseases / psychology
  • Autoimmune Diseases / therapy
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Presenteeism*
  • Quality of Life*
  • Severity of Illness Index
  • Skin Diseases, Vesiculobullous / complications*
  • Skin Diseases, Vesiculobullous / psychology*
  • Skin Diseases, Vesiculobullous / therapy
  • Young Adult