Validation of the diagnostic criteria for atopic dermatitis
Objective: To validate the accuracy of newly proposed diagnostic criteria for atopic dermatitis (AD). Design: Double-blind, cross-sectional study comparing the achievement of new criteria with the diagnosis of a dermatologist. Setting: A private, general dermatology, outpatient clinic. Patients: A sample of 416 consecutive patients attending the clinic within 2 months (146 males and 270 females), consisting of 60 patients with AD and 356 control patients with other skin diseases. Main Outcome Measures: Sensitivity, specificity, and positive and negative predictive values of proposed criteria in the diagnosis of AD. Results: Sensitivity, specificity, and positive and negative predictive values of proposed diagnostic criteria for AD were 10.0% (95% confidence interval [CI],4.1%-21.2%), 98.3% (95% CI, 96.2%-99.3%), 50.0% (95% CI, 22.3%-77.7%), and 86.6% (95% CI, 82.8%-89.7%), respectively. Conclusions: These diagnostic criteria for AD are highly specific and are suitable for clinical trials. However, they may not achieve enough sensitivity to be useful for large, population-based epidemiological studies or for routine clinical practice, at least in Iran.