Itch is a common and frequently severe condition. The itch was best examined by self-report, which is frequently combined with patient-reported outcome measures (PROMs). Current PROMs for itch were restricted and might not reflect the entire extent of the condition’s impact on quality of life (QOL). For a study, researchers aimed to create a complete conceptual model of an itch to help doctors understand it and to serve as a foundation for the creation of efficient and valid PROMs of itch. The researchers created a conceptual model of itch using mixed techniques, including a systematic review (n=491 articles), semi-structured interviews (n=33 patients with persistent itch with different etiologies), and grounded theory utilizing a constant comparative approach.
The Wilson and Cleary model provided them with an acceptable foundation for arranging their findings. It was made up of five major components: biological and physiological characteristics, symptom status, functional status, general health perceptions, and QOL. They suggested a causal link that started with biological and physiological components and progressed to the direct and indirect effects of itch and its sequelae, such as pain and sleep disruption. These impeded function, caused task avoidance, stigma, social and relational issues, emotional disturbances, and increased treatment burden. These sequelae, when combined, changed people’s assessments of their health, quality of life, and treatment response.
The conceptual model highlighted the significant patient burden of itch and revealed unmet requirements in the assessment and therapy of itch.