Centre of Evidence Based Dermatology
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POEM — Patient Oriented Eczema Measure

Overview

The Patient Oriented Eczema Measure (POEM) is a tool used for monitoring atopic eczema severity. It focuses on the illness as experienced by the patient. 

Suitable for use in the outpatient clinic, audit, epidemiological studies and clinical trials, POEM has been recommended for use by clinical guidelines including those issued by the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE). 

POEM is recommended by the HOME (Harmonising Outcome Measures for Eczema) initiative as the core outcome instrument for measuring patient-reported symptoms in eczema trials.

 

About using POEM

  • POEM is free to use
  • You do not need a license to use POEM or to create a translation.
  • If you're planning on using POEM in a research trial/study or in your clinic, we request that you send us an email with details of how you plan to use the scale. This helps us track impact.
  • POEM is copyright of the University of Nottingham.
  • Further information about scoring POEM is available below.

 
 
Details of the original publication and studies relating to the validation of the scale and the Minimal Clinically Important Difference (MCID) are listed in the reference section.
 

POEM Download - Paper Format (PDF)

For self-completion: This version is suitable for patients who are able to read and understand the questions. This will include both adults and older children. 

POEM for adults
(also available as a Word file)

For proxy-completion: This version is for parents/guardians to fill out on their child's behalf. There are no specific age cut-offs for using this version.

POEM for children
(also available as a Word file)

For self/proxy-completion: This version is suitable for both completion by patients and for completion by parents/guardians on their child's behalf.

POEM for all ages
(also available as a Word file)

 

POEM Download - Electronic Format (Android/IOS)

POEM is now available to download on mobile devices. Using the app, My Eczema Tracker,  POEM can be completed electronically and the score automatically calculated. Additionally, POEM scores are stored, so  eczema severity can be tracked over weeks and months.

appstoreplay-badge

Click on the links above to download the app, or search My Eczema Tracker in your app store. 

Need to report an issue? If you've encounted a bug or error with the app, please get in touch.

POEMapp
 

POEM Download - Translations

We have a selection of free translations available in PDF format, which are listed below. Please see the FAQ section for further information about translations. If you're thinking of creating a translation of POEM, please see our guidance document.

Danish

¶ - See note below

20/10/17 - This translation previously contained a typo which has now been corrected.

Courtesy of Dr Uffe Nygaard
 
¶ - See note below
Courtesy of Dr Uffe Nygaard
 
 
Dutch
For adults
Courtesy of AbbVie Inc.
 
For adults
Courtesy of AbbVie Inc.
 
 
English
 
 
 
 
Finnish
 
 
French
* - See note below
 -
 
 
Courtesy of AbbVie Inc.
 
Translation courtesy of Pfizer and Corporate Translations, Inc
 
 
German
 * - See note below
 -
 
 
 
Japanese
Courtesy of Adelphi Real World.
 
 ¶ - See note below
Courtesy of Dr Yukihiro Ohya, Dr. Shoji Mihara and Dr. Afsane Riazi and Dr Jonathan Batchelor
 
 
Spanish
 * - See note below
Courtesy of Dr Ignacio Garcia Doval and Professor Marcos Serrano-Dueñas.
 
Courtesy of Corporate Translations, Inc
 

Translation courtesy of Pfizer and Corporate Translations, Inc

 
 
Swedish
 
 

* indicates the translation has been created by a research group. We have had these translations checked for accuracy by a dermatologist fluent in English and the language of the translation, however, we cannot vouch for the methodology original used to create these translations (nor provide any certification).

¶ indicate that the translation team has followed our recommended steps for translating POEM fully. The back translations have been checked for accuracy by the CEBD team and signed off as completed.

Frequently Asked Questions (click on question to reveal answer)

Who owns the copyright of POEM?
POEM is copyright of the University of Nottingham.
 
What permissions do I need to use POEM in my clinic/observational study/clinical trial?
We are delighted that you would like to use the POEM scale.  
You do not need a license to use the scale as it is free to use and openly available. We would however ask that you send us an email to let us know how you plan to use it.
 
How is scoring done?

Each of the seven questions carries equal weight and the responses are scored from 0 to 4 as detailed below: 

  • 0 = no days
  • 1 = 1-2 days
  • 2 = 3-4 days
  • 3 = 5-6 days
  • 4 = Every day
 
What does a POEM score mean?

To help patients and clinicians to understand their POEM scores, the following bandings have been e stablished (see reference section below): 

  • Clear or almost clear = 0 to 2;
  • Mild eczema = 3 to 7;
  • Moderate eczema = 8 to 16;
  • Severe eczema = 17 to 24;
  • Very severe = 25 to 28
 
What happens when there are missing data and unclear responses?
The POEM scale is usually very well completed, however, occasionally patients may fail to complete all seven questions. If missing items occur the following rules should be followed:

  • If one question is left unanswered this is scored 0 and the scores are summed and expressed as usual out of a maximum of 28
  • If more than one question is left unanswered the questionnaire is not scored
  • If two or more response options are selected for a single question, the response option with the highest score should be recorded
 
Can I alter the wording or presentation of POEM?

Alterations to the layout/presentation (e.g. addition of trial logos) is permitted, however we do not advise making any changes to the wording of the POEM scale as this is likely to change its validity.

 
Can I create an electronic / online version of POEM?

Electronic versions of POEM are permitted, however, please note the following:

Our recommendation would be that you do not use mandatory data entry fields for the individual questions on the POEM. This is to ensure the version you create remains as similar as possible to the paper version of POEM - thus allowing comparison of results from different trials.

Additionally, all validation work has been conducted using paper or online versions of the POEM scale that include the wording as specified* and which have allowed missing values to entered.  Changing this to make all questions mandatory could change the psychometric properties of the scale.

*The only changes which may need to be made in converting POEM into an electronic format relate to the instructions for completion. For example, the input method on the paper form states "please circle one response" - it would be acceptable to change this to "please tap" or "select."

 
Do you have any (more) translations?
The limited number of translations we have are available for free on the download section of this webpage. In the future we hope to provide translations for languages not yet listed. Other organisations (e.g. PROQOLID) may have additional translations of POEM available for purchase.
 
I work for/on behalf of a organisation which requires POEM to be translated into another language. What permissions are needed?
You do not need a license to translate POEM into another language. We are however keen to make translated versions of the scale available to others in the eczema research community, so we would appreciate it if those who create translations would send us a copy to us, and allow us to share it on this webpage (we will acknowledge your contribution).
 
Is this translation of POEM suitable for a different population? / Is the English version suitable for all English speaking countries?
We cannot comment on the suitability of a translation for a particular population. Eventually we hope to run some cross-cultural validation studies as part of the Harmonising Outcome Measures for Eczema (HOME) initiative. 
 

The Patient-Oriented Eczema Measure: development and initial validation of a new tool for measuring atopic eczema severity from the patients' perspective. Charman C, Venn A, Williams HC. Arch Dermatol. 2004;140:1513-1519 

Translating Patient-Oriented Eczema Measure (POEM) scores into clinical practice by suggesting severity strata derived using anchor-based methods. Charman CR, Venn AJ, Ravenscroft JC, Williams HC. Br J Dermatol. 2013; 169(6): 1326–1332.

The Patient-Oriented Eczema Measure in young children: responsiveness and minimal clinically important difference.  Gaunt DM, Metcalfe C, Ridd M. Allergy 2016

EASI, (objective) SCORAD and POEM for atopic eczema: responsiveness and minimal clinically important difference. Schram ME, Spuls PI, Leeflang MM, Lindeboom R, Bos JD, Schmitt J. Allergy 2012 Jan; 67(1):99-106.

POEM a core instrument to measure symptoms in clinical trials: a HOME statement.Spuls PI, Gerbens LA, Simpson E, Apfelbacher CJ, Chalmers JR, Thomas KS, Prinsen CA, von Kobyletzki LB, Singh JA, Williams HC, Schmitt J; HOME initiative collaborators .Br J Dermatol. 2016.

 
© The University of Nottingham. The Patient Oriented Eczema Measure (POEM) scale is free to use. Permission is granted to reproduce and/or redistribute this material in its entirety without modification. Any use which falls outside this remit requires the express consent of the copyright owner.
 

Centre of Evidence Based Dermatology

The University of Nottingham
King's Meadow Campus
Lenton Lane
Nottingham, NG7 2NR


telephone: +44 (0) 115 823 1048
email:cebd@nottingham.ac.uk