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Norwegian eczema-site goes global


Itching and scratching keep many people awake at night. Atopic eczema affects one in five children and many adults. Now, the self-help website has gotten a facelift and gone global, with information in English and Chinese.

Thomas Schopf, Norwegian Centre for E-health Research. Photo: Lene Lundberg
Thomas Schopf, Norwegian Centre for E-health Research. Photo: Lene Lundberg

– A paediatrician from Hong Kong heard about our website Eksemskolen.no, and was willing to cooperate with us to give the old site a facelift and spread the knowledge to the world. That is why the website is now also in Chinese and English. Eczema is eczema, wherever you live.

Doctor and researcher Thomas Schopf (48) at the Norwegian Centre for E-health Research is pleased with the new partner on the opposite side of the globe, Hong Kong Paediatric and Adolescent Dermatology Society. Schopf also works at the new allergy centre at the University Hospital of North Norway, and as a dermatologist. 

Using e-health to cope

The original Norwegian website Eksemskolen.no went online in 2005. Schopf then worked at the Department of Dermatology in the University Hospital of North Norway. He is interested in how both health professionals as well as patients and parents can be educated to cope with and treat atopic eczema. It should not be necessary to visit a doctor in person every time.

– We want to encourage self-management and use e-health to give people tools to deal with their situation in a better way, he says.

He is pleased to see the online knowledge base go global. The new partnership with the Chinese has made the website accessible for everyone who speaks English and Chinese.

– We try to use a language everybody can understand. We know that many health professionals – now also outside Scandinavia – are using the site, and spreading the word to their patients and next of kin. I hope they will continue! he says.

The improved and mobile-friendly website was launched in September 2017, and will be developed further.

Here is the new site: https://www.eczema.hk/ 

One in five children get eczema. Photo: Jan Fredrik Frantzen
One in five children get eczema. Photo: Jan Fredrik Frantzen

Many have eczema

In Norway, about one in five children are diagnosed with atopic eczema. Many will grow out of it, while some persist into adulthood. Those with moderate to serious symptoms need proper care and treatment.

– Atopic eczema can be hereditary. The discomfort and need for treatment varies. For some it is sufficient to use moisturizer and steroid creams. For the different severities, there are good treatments that will improve a patient’s condition, such as creams, baths and phototherapy (light therapy), says Schopf.