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Photoprotective habits of patients with cutaneous lupus erythematosus

Shirley Y. Yang; Ira Bernstein; Danielle Q. Lin; Benjamin F. Chong

(Profiled Authors: Ira Bernstein; Benjamin Chong)

Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology. 2013;68(6):944-951.e1.


Background: Previous studies have suggested that patients with cutaneous lupus erythematosus (CLE) are deficient in sunscreen use. Use of other photoprotective methods by patients with CLE has not been assessed to our knowledge. Objective: We sought to identify demographic and clinical characteristics of patients with CLE who have the lowest overall sun-protection habits scores, and who are least likely to practice 5 individual photoprotective methods (ie, shade, sunscreen, long sleeves, hat, and sunglasses). Methods: A total of 105 patients with CLE at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center in Dallas completed a survey to evaluate their photoprotective practices. Additional information including demographics and clinical indicators related to CLE was collected from the patients. Results: Patients with medium and dark skin (ie, Fitzpatrick skin types III-VI) and patients aged 31 to 50 years were the least likely CLE subgroups to practice overall photoprotection, as indicated by low sun-protection habits scores (P = .001 and P = .04, respectively). In terms of individual photoprotective methods, male patients with CLE were deficient in sunscreen use, but were more likely to wear hats than female patients with CLE. Sunscreen and sunglasses use was also significantly more infrequent in dark-skinned patients than those with Fitzpatrick skin types I to IV. Patients with CLE between the ages of 41 and 50 years were least likely to wear hats. Limitations: This study was subject to reporter bias and did not cover barriers to and knowledge of photoprotection. Conclusion: Cultural customs and misconceptions shared by those from the general population have a significant influence on the photoprotective habits of this CLE population. These need to be addressed to improve photoprotection rates in these at-risk individuals. © 2012 by the American Academy of Dermatology, Inc.

PMID: 23360867     PMCID: PMC3657339    

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