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Cureus. 2024 Apr 30;16(4):e59373. doi: 10.7759/cureus.59373. eCollection 2024 Apr.


BACKGROUND: Skin diseases can lead to stigmatization with negative consequences for patients' quality of life and mental health.

AIM: The aim of this study was to estimate the prevalence of stigmatization experienced by patients with vitiligo, psoriasis, acne, rosacea, or atopic dermatitis and to assess the relationships between the level of stigmatization and patient characteristics.

METHODS: This cross-sectional study included adult patients with vitiligo, psoriasis, acne, rosacea, or atopic dermatitis attending the dermatology clinics of various general hospitals in Saudi Arabia. Stigma levels were assessed using the six-item Stigma Scale.

RESULTS: The prevalence of stigmatization was 90.4% among the 280 patients included. Multiple regression analyses revealed the factors that independently and significantly increased the level of stigmatization. These included male gender (B = 4.300, 95%CI 3.407-5.192, P <0.001), positive family history of skin conditions (B = 2.267, 95%CI 1.139-3.395, P <0.001), number of skin diseases (B = 2.357, 95%CI 0.998-3.716, P = 0.001), and presence of facial lesions (B = 2.455, 95%CI 1.206-3.705, P<0.001).

CONCLUSIONS: The prevalence of stigmatization is high among patients with chronic skin diseases in Saudi Arabia. Identifying patients at risk for high levels of stigmatization may allow them to be provided with appropriate social and psychological support.

PMID:38817457 | PMC:PMC11139009 | DOI:10.7759/cureus.59373

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