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Aktuelle Dermatologie ; 47(12):552-557, 2021.
Article in German | Web of Science | ID: covidwho-1585713


Background The spread of COVID-19 infections since the end of 2019 has led to far-reaching restrictions on public life. In order to avoid overloading the German health system, elective medical treatments were severely restricted in the medical sector during the first lockdown in spring 2020. Patients and methods In this study, the influence of the lockdown in spring 2020 on the number of patients in a dermatological university outpatient clinic was analyzed and compared with the corresponding periods of the previous years 2018 and 2019. The patient data was taken from the hospital's internal documentation system according to standardized criteria. Results In spring 2020 there was a significant decrease in patients by 28.3 % compared to 2018 and by 28.7 % compared to 2019, especially patients who presented to the university outpatient department for the first time were particularly affected. Above all, there was a decline in the number of patients with chronic inflammatory diseases and tumor diseases. Age-specific differences were not found, except older patients with malignant diseases in particular presented less frequently during lockdown. Non-binary minorities presented less frequently in 2020 compared to the two previous years. Conclusions The results of the study showed a decrease in the willingness of patients with dermatological diseases to introduce themselves during the lockdown. Illnesses could remain undetected for longer and, as a result of the later start of treatment, lead to more severe disease courses and poorer therapeutic options. Especially in patients with malignant diseases, this can lead to a poorer prognosis.