Eczema is a chronic inflammation of the outer layers of the skin. It is most common in infants and children. It can occur in adults. This condition is not contagious. Eczema is also known as atopic dermatitis.
The symptoms vary from person to person. Scratching and rubbing can cause or worsen some of the symptoms.
Dry, itchy skin
Cracks behind the ears or in other skin creases
Rashes on the cheeks, arms, and legs
Red, scaly skin
Thick, leathery skin
Small, raised bumps on the skin
Crusting, oozing, cracking, or scaling of the skin
Worsening in the winter, when inside air is dry due to central heating
Your doctor will ask about your symptoms and medical history. A physical exam will be done. You may be referred to specialist. A dermatologist focuses on skin disorders. An allergist focuses on allergies.
The main goals of eczema treatment are to:
Heal the skin and keep it healthy
Stop scratching or rubbing
Avoid skin infection
Recognize and avoid precipitating allergens, if there are any
Learn to avoid scratching
Treatment options may vary. Your doctor may recommend more than one depending on your condition. They include:
Avoid hot or long baths or showers. Keep them less than 15 minutes.
Use mild, unscented bar soap or nonsoap cleanser. Use it sparingly.
Air-dry or gently pat dry after bathing. Apply gentle moisturizer right after.
Treat skin infections right away.
Prescription creams and ointments containing cortisone, tacrolimus, or pimecrolimus
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http://www.ebscohost.com/dynamed/what.php: Alexander DD, Cabana MD. Partially hydrolyzed 100% whey protein infant formula and reduced risk of atopic dermatitis: a meta-analysis. J Pediatr Gastroenterol Nutr. 2010;50(4):422-430.
Please be aware that this information is provided to supplement the care
provided by your physician. It is neither intended nor implied to be a
substitute for professional medical advice. CALL YOUR HEALTHCARE PROVIDER
IMMEDIATELY IF YOU THINK YOU MAY HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY. Always seek the
advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to
starting any new treatment or with any questions you may have regarding a