During the 18 years that I have been working in dermatology, I have never been able to recall such an exciting time for children with Atopic Dermatitis (eczema). Whilst there have ben advances in dermatology for adults, children have always been left behind. With new drugs only being tested on over 18yrs age groups. Those drugs eventually trickle down to children and are used “off-license” which effectively means I prescribe the drugs for the children but only in extreme cases, as a last resort and the book would stop with me and the parents of the child affected. Finally, we are entering new era in the management of atopic dermatitis. There are over 70 new molecules being studied, both in cream formulations, oral and injectables. And finally….. children with sever eczema are getting a chance, because these drugs have been studied in their age group.
I am delighted to announce that I am now able to prescribe the new drug Dupilumab for children ager 12-17yrs. Initially, with support from Sanofi the manufacturer but it is hoped eventually this drug will be approved for use in the NHS. Even more exciting is that I was inlvoved in recruiting even younger children into research studies using this drug and it is hoped that the results although still be anayalsed are going to be very positive.