Eyelash trichomegaly (ET) is increased length (≥ 12 mm), curling, pigmentation, or thickness of eyelashes. Among acquired causes, allergic diseases and atopic dermatitis (AD) have been found to be associated with eyelash trichomegaly especially in children; however, to date, this claim has not been studied in detail. To compare the eyelash lengths of AD and ichthyosis vulgaris (IV) patients with those of age- and sex-matched patients with unrelated skin disorders, we measured (with a digital Vernier caliper) and compared the eyelash lengths of AD (n = 58) and IV (n = 31) patients to those of age- and sex-matched patients with unrelated skin disorders (n = 178). The eyelashes of the AD and male IV patients were found to be significantly longer than those of the controls (p < 0.05). The severity of atopic dermatitis, i.e., SCORAD of > 50, hyperlinearity of palms and soles, and high IgE levels significantly correlated with the long eyelashes. The limitations of study are single-center study and filaggrin gene mutation in patients of IV could not be studied.
Conclusion: Thus, long eyelashes may act as surrogate marker of severe AD and serve as a cutaneous marker of IV patients.
What is Known:
• Among acquired causes, allergic diseases and atopic dermatitis have been found to be associated with eyelash trichomegaly especially in children.
What is New:
• The severity of atopic dermatitis, i.e., SCORAD of > 50, hyperlinearity of palms and soles, and high IgE levels significantly correlate with the long eyelashes; thus, long eyelashes may act as surrogate marker of severe atopic dermatitis.
• It may also serve as a cutaneous marker of ichthyosis vulgaris especially in male patients and patients with palmoplantar hyperlinearity.
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MS designed and supervised the project, supervised data collection and analysis, and first drafted the manuscript. MP assisted in data management, was responsible for sample management, and revised the manuscript for important intellectual content. All authors approved the final manuscript as submitted and agree to be accountable for all aspects of the work.
Compliance with ethical standards
The study was approved by the local Ethics Committee of Nashik, India.
Conflict of interest
The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.
Informed consent was obtained from all patients/parents (in the case of minor patients).
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