Hidradenitis suppurativa: DermNetNZ image

Skin Disease Hidradenitis More Commonly Afflicts Black Patients

MedicalResearch.com Interview with:

Dr. Albrecht

Joerg Albrecht, MD, PhD
Dermatologist, Internist, Clinical Pharmacologist
Division of Dermatology, Department of Medicine
Attending Dermatologist, Chair Division of Dermatology
Chair system-wide Pharmacy & Therapeutics Committee
Cook County Health
Chicago, IL  60612

MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study?

Response: The study was stimulated by data that suggested that an unusually large proportion of inpatient with Hidradenitis suppurativa (HS) were African American. HS is an underdiagnosed disease and the total numbers of inpatients with HS in the year we looked at initially seemed small. So we wanted to test whether this finding held up when the period of observation was extended. Point estimates can be unreliable and we had followed another finding in the data that did not hold up when we looked at other years, so we felt one year was not enough to confirm a trend

Hidradenitis suppurativa: DermNetNZ image

Hidradenitis suppurativa: DermNetNZ image

MedicalResearch.com: What are the main findings?

Response: 15% Americans are black, but 60% of the patients with a primary diagnosis of HS were black. We knew that about 30% of the outpatients with HS are black, but amongst the most seriously affected patients, black patients are even more affected. We think this is important.

MedicalResearch.com: What should readers take away from your report?

Response: I think the primary message is that this disease affects different ethnic groups very differently.

MedicalResearch.com: What recommendations do you have for future research as a result of this work?

Response: We have a lot of information about access to care, and black patients are likely to be more disadvantaged. However, I do not believe that the results are only due to the lack of access of care that many minority patients face, but given the number of black patients with severe HS we need to make sure that these patients find it easy to get adequate treatment for their HS .

I have no relevant disclosures


Edigin E, Kaul S, Eseaton PO, Albrecht J. Racial and Ethnic Distribution of Patients Hospitalized With Hidradenitis Suppurativa, 2008-2018. JAMA Dermatol. Published online August 11, 2021. doi:10.1001/jamadermatol.2021.2999



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Last Updated on August 16, 2021 by Marie Benz MD FAAD