5 years ago

The views of children and young people on the use of silk garments for the treatment of eczema: a nested qualitative study within the CLOTHES randomised controlled trial

F. C. Cowdell, K. S. Thomas, E. F. Harrison, J. Batchelor, , E. V. Wake, S. Lawton
Background Many children suffer with skin diseases, but to date, most dermatological research has been done ‘on’ rather than ‘with’ children; in this study we actively sought the experiences of children and young people. Atopic eczema (AE) is a chronic, itchy, inflammatory skin condition that affects around 20% of children and can impact on health and wellbeing for children and their families. The role of specialist clothing in the management of AE is poorly understood. Objectives The aim of this study, which was nested in a randomised controlled trial was to qualitatively examine child participants’ experiences of using silk garments for the treatment of AE. Methods Eighteen children aged 5-15, who took part in the CLOTHES trial, participated in age-appropriate individual interviews or focus groups. Results Thematic analysis generated 4 themes directly related to the garments: i) expectations of the garments; ii) wearing the silk garments; iii) did they help? and iv) thoughts about the garments. The conclusions from this nested qualitative study are that: there was some limited improvement in eczema for some children but that the hoped for ‘miracle cure’ did not transpire. A mixed picture of knowledge, beliefs and experiences of using the silk garments emerged. Conclusion Engaging children in the evaluation of the garments provided first hand nuanced insights that enhanced understanding of the CLOTHES study as a whole. This nested study demonstrates that children can and indeed want to be engaged in dermatological research in meaningful ways that add to our understanding of treatment options. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.

Publisher URL: http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/resolve/doi

DOI: 10.1111/bjd.15909

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