Chronic itch in African Americans: an unmet need

Giuseppe Ingrasci, Nour El-Kashlan, Andrew Alexis, Gil Yosipovitch

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


Chronic pruritus carries a significant burden of disease and is associated with a negative impact on quality of life. African Americans are disproportionately burdened by chronic pruritic disorders, including but not limited to atopic dermatitis, prurigo nodularis, inflammatory scalp dermatoses, pathologic scarring, and HIV-related dermatoses. Racial differences in skin structure and function may contribute to the pathogenesis of itch in African Americans. Itch perception and response to treatment in African Americans remain understudied and not well understood. As such, there is a large unmet need with regard to the knowledge and management of pruritus in African Americans. This review highlights notable differences in the epidemiology, pathophysiology, genetic predisposition, clinical presentation, and response to treatment for select pruritic skin conditions. By addressing itch as an unmet need in African Americans, we hope to improve patient outcomes and lessen disparities in dermatologic care.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)405-415
Number of pages11
JournalArchives of Dermatological Research
Issue number5
StatePublished - Jul 2022


  • Acne keloidalis nuchae
  • African Americans
  • Atopic dermatitis
  • Central centrifugal cicatricial alopecia
  • Chronic itch
  • Hypertrophic scar formation
  • Keloid
  • Post-burn pruritus
  • Prurigo nodularis
  • Pruritic papular eruption of HIV
  • Pruritus
  • Seborrheic dermatitis


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