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The relationship between the psychological and immunological state in patients with atopic dermatitis1

      Abstract

      The relationship between the psychological and immunological state in patients with atopic dermatitis was investigated. It was found that patients with atopic dermatitis are significantly more depressive and scored higher for state anxiety (P<0.05) than the normal control group. They also tended to be more psychosomatic symptom-prone and to score higher for trait anxiety. NK activity in patients with atopic dermatitis was significantly lower than in normal controls (P<0.01), while serum IFN-γ levels tended to be slightly higher and serum IL-4 levels somewhat lower. No significant correlation was detected between any pair of psychological test/immunological examination for either patients or normal controls. However, in the examination of path analyses, psychological variables affect serum levels of IFN-γ and IL-4 more in the patients than the normal controls. Only STAI(T) and (S) affect NK activity in atopic dermatitis patients. By a discriminant analysis, NK cell activity and serum IFN-γ appeared statistically significant. We conclude that the psychological state is to some extent related to the immunological state.

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