Patients' perspective, quality of life and treatment goals in Hailey–Hailey disease: Lessons learned from the German National Registry

D. Rogner, L. Heimerl, S. Heyer, T. Biedermann, E. Sattler, A. Zink

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Background: Hailey–Hailey disease (HHD) remains a difficult-to-treat dermatosis and little is known about the patient's perception of the disease activity, the treatment success and its impact on quality-of-life (QoL). Objective: To obtain better understanding of HHD patients' needs regarding their medical condition, financial burden, QoL, subjective well-being and treatment thereof as well as satisfaction to evaluate common treatments' ‘real-life’ relevance. Methods: With initiation of the national registry for Darier's disease (DD; Morbus Darier, MD) and Hailey–Hailey disease (HH) MDHHgermany, patients with HHD diagnosis were included starting June 2020. To assess subjective symptoms, patients filled out questionnaires such as the DLQI (dermatological life quality index), numeric rating scale (NRS) for itch, pain and burning sensation, as well as the SWLS (satisfaction with life scale) questionnaire to quantify overall satisfaction in life. Additionally, data on therapies were collected along with the patients’ satisfaction of those and their medical care. Furthermore, patients assessed financial aspects and work ability. Results: One hundred and two patients were recruited from dermatology clinics, office-based dermatologists and self-help platforms across Germany between June 2020 and February 2023, 90 were eligible and analysed (mean: 49.91 years, 73.33% females, 26.67% males). 39.77% stated according to the DLQI their life is severely/very severely affected. Satisfaction with life was mediocre. Burning sensation was most pronounced among subjective symptoms (NRS 5.85 ± 2.80). Systemic treatments were rated as ineffective according to 56.92%, 25.56% had never received one. Most prescribed systemic treatments were corticosteroids (73.8%), followed by low-dose naltrexone (LDN) (26.2%), retinoids (15.4%) and antibiotics (13.8%). Satisfaction with medical care was generally low. Conclusion: Our ‘real-life’ data state a major disease burden and impact on the QoL for affected individuals, as well as limited disease control due to inadequate therapies. MDHHgermany can provide insights into improvement of healthcare support with this debilitating disease and improve QoL. In the long term, it aims to provide basis for further clinical trials, epidemiological studies and immunological investigations.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)419-429
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of the European Academy of Dermatology and Venereology
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 2024
Externally publishedYes


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