Atopic dermatitis is a recurrent, chronic inflammatory skin condition that mostly affects children and newborns. The frequency of atopic dermatitis in children is believed to be 5–20% globally. Atopic dermatitis has been linked to significant financial consequences and a worse quality of life in studies. Atopic dermatitis currently has no proven curative therapy; first-line therapy has traditionally consisted of dry skincare, avoidance of triggers, use of topical corticosteroids, and injection of histamine H1 receptor antagonists (antihistamines) and oral antibacterials when needed. While topical corticosteroids are beneficial in many individuals, they are associated with the risk of local and systemic side effects. As a result, doctors and patients are hesitant to use stronger topical corticosteroids in certain parts of the body for extended periods of time.

In this article, researchers look at the efficacy and cost-effectiveness of topical calcineurin inhibitors in treating atopic dermatitis. This new family of atopic dermatitis medications (particularly tacrolimus ointment and pimecrolimus cream) is a significant step forward in the treatment of atopic dermatitis. Topical calcineurin inhibitors are efficacious and do not have the side effects associated with topical corticosteroids, according to clinical evidence. A number of studies have found that topical calcineurin inhibitors improve the quality of life of patients and their carers. Topical calcineurin inhibitors appear to be a cost-effective therapeutic choice when compared to branded topical corticosteroids and conventional standards of care. Because conclusive head-to-head comparative trials using both medicines have not been undertaken, drawing comparisons between tacrolimus and pimecrolimus is challenging.