Hidradenitis suppurativa: Evaluating activity patterns and predictors of recalcitrant course–A population-based study

Shani Fisher, Ilya Kagan, Lilach Zoller, Arnon D. Cohen, Khalaf Kridin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: Epidemiological evidence regarding the course and activity patterns of hidradenitis suppurativa (HS) is yet to be delineated. Objective: To identify activity patterns of HS throughout the time axis and to outline predictors of recalcitrant disease course. Methods: A population-based retrospective cohort study was performed to follow patients with HS (n = 4417) throughout the initial 10 years following their diagnosis. The disease was considered active in a certain month if one of the following criteria was fulfilled: (i) purchase of an HS-related drug, (ii) admission to a dermatological ward and (iii) referral to a dermatological consultation in an emergency room. Patients with a recalcitrant disease were defined as those with ≥5 years of follow-up with ≥6 ‘active months’ each. Patients with an indolent course were defined as those experiencing ≥9 years of follow-up with ≤1 ‘active months’ each. Results: The average (SD) number of months in which patients had an active disease was 1.37 (1.28) months per year. While 98 (2.2%) patients pursued a recalcitrant course, 1390 (31.5%) went through an indolent disease course. Older age (≥38 years; adjusted OR, 6.17; 95% CI, 3.33–11.43), Arab ethnicity (adjusted OR, 2.04; 95% CI, 1.20–3.48), low socioeconomic status (adjusted OR, 1.64; 95% CI, 1.03–2.60), obesity (adjusted OR, 3.47; 95% CI, 2.25–5.34) and smoking (adjusted OR, 2.65; 95% CI, 1.57–4.47) were found to independently predict recalcitrant course of HS. Conclusions: Mild course is more frequently encountered than severe course among Israeli patients with HS. Modifiable risk factors of recalcitrant course should be carefully addressed.

Original languageEnglish
JournalAustralasian Journal of Dermatology
StateAccepted/In press - 2022
Externally publishedYes


  • activity patterns
  • hidradenitis suppurativa
  • recalcitrant course


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