Patient-reported burden of skin disorders in coeliac disease

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Objectives: The current knowledge on the associations between coeliac disease and different skin diseases is contradictory and the patient’s perspective on the burden of these is lacking. This study aimed to investigate patient-reported frequency, severity and quality of life effects of skin disorders in coeliac disease patients compared to controls and moreover to study the impacts of gluten-free diet on these skin diseases. Materials and methods: A study questionnaire designed for the purposes of this study and a validated Dermatology Life Quality Index (DLQI) questionnaire were posted to 600 adult members of the Finnish Coeliac Society and 1173 matched controls. Responses from 327 coeliac disease patients and 382 non-coeliac controls were compared. Results: Coeliac disease patients were shown to be at no increased risk of atopic dermatitis, acne, rosacea, psoriasis, alopecia areata, vitiligo or chronic urticaria. The severity of these skin diseases did not differ between study groups, but the risk for at least moderate effects on quality of life caused by dermatological diseases was increased among those with coeliac disease. Positive response from gluten-free diet was most commonly experienced by coeliac disease patients with atopic dermatitis. Conclusions: Even though the risk for skin diseases was shown not to be increased among coeliac disease patients, there is still an increased burden related to experienced skin symptoms among these patients, which non-dermatologists treating coeliac disease patients should acknowledge.

Original languageEnglish
JournalScandinavian Journal of Gastroenterology
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 2023
Publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed


  • atopic dermatitis
  • burden
  • Coeliac disease
  • dermatitis herpetiformis
  • gluten-free diet
  • quality of life
  • skin disease

Publication forum classification

  • Publication forum level 1

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Gastroenterology


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