Population cohort studies are important for understanding the current status of the target disease and its relation to comorbidity, gender, age, or environmental factors. To better understand atopic dermatitis (AD) and its related diseases, we initiated in 2001 a population cohort study of nursery school children from Ishigaki Island, Okinawa, Japan. The cohort study comprised a dermatologist- based physical examination, questionnaire administration, and blood sample analysis. The mean prevalence of AD was 6.3%. Questionnaire-based bronchial asthma and egg allergy in the children and paternal and sibling AD were statistically significant risk factors for AD. Boys with AD had a high incidence of asthma that was coexistent with a high serum total immunoglobulin E level. Also a high incidence of egg allergy was associated with greater AD severity as assessed by TARC CCL17.
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