Pissa M, Jerkovic Gulin S
Microorganisms 11 (8) - [2023-07-27; online 2023-07-27]
The incidence of severe cutaneous drug eruptions during the COVID-19 period in Sweden has not been studied previously. Our aim was to compare the incidence of these skin reactions in a Swedish health region during the COVID-19 pandemic period with that of the year after: we conducted a retrospective, observational cohort study using data from a national registry of patients diagnosed with cutaneous drug eruptions during the pandemic in Sweden. We included the number of patients diagnosed with severe cutaneous drug eruptions at the Department of Dermatology in the Jonkoping health region during the COVID-19 pandemic (1 April 2020 to 31 March 2021) and the reference period (1 April 2021 to 31 March 2022). We examined the monthly occurrences of cutaneous drug eruptions in three dermatology clinics within the Jonkoping health region. The frequency of these eruptions was determined for two distinct time periods: during the pandemic and post-pandemic. The study included 102 patients with cutaneous drug eruptions: 29 patients were diagnosed during the COVID-19 pandemic period and 73 were diagnosed during the reference period. The difference in the number of cutaneous drug eruptions cases (p-value = 0.0001, 95% CI 1.4995-3.5500, OR 2.3072) during the pandemic period compared to the post-pandemic period was significant. To our knowledge, the impact of the pandemic on cutaneous drug eruptions has not been investigated in EU countries. The increasing and differentiation of the number of diagnosed cutaneous drug eruptions cases after the pandemic could be explained by the removal of COVID-19 restrictions and the more frequent health-seeking behavior during the post-pandemic period.