Eczema Facts (cont.)
Gary W. Cole, MD, FAAD
Dr. Cole is board certified in dermatology. He obtained his BA degree in bacteriology, his MA degree in microbiology, and his MD at the University of California, Los Angeles. He trained in dermatology at the University of Oregon, where he completed his residency.
William C. Shiel Jr., MD, FACP, FACR
Dr. Shiel received a Bachelor of Science degree with honors from the University of Notre Dame. There he was involved in research in radiation biology and received the Huisking Scholarship. After graduating from St. Louis University School of Medicine, he completed his Internal Medicine residency and Rheumatology fellowship at the University of California, Irvine. He is board-certified in Internal Medicine and Rheumatology.
In this Article
- Eczema facts
- What is eczema?
- Are there different types of eczema? What causes eczema?
- What are eczema symptoms and signs?
- How is eczema diagnosed?
- What is the treatment for eczema?
- What are home remedies for eczema?
- Does diet affect eczema?
- Is there a cure for eczema?
- Is eczema contagious?
- What is the prognosis of eczema?
- Is it possible to prevent eczema?
- Eczema (Atopic Dermatitis) Slideshow Pictures
- Take the Eczema Quiz!
- Adult Skin Problems - Slideshow
- Atopic Eczema FAQs
- Find a local Dermatologist in your town
What are eczema symptoms and signs?
Almost all patients with eczema complain of itching. Since the appearance of most types of eczema is similar, the distribution of the eruption can be of great help in distinguishing one type from another. For example, stasis dermatitis occurs most often on the lower leg while atopic dermatitis occurs in the front of the elbow and behind the knee.
How is eczema diagnosed?
An accurate diagnosis requires an examination of the entire skin surface and a careful history. It is important to rule out curable conditions caused by infectious organisms. Occasionally, a sample of skin (biopsy) may be sent for examination in a laboratory. If allergies are suspected, patch testing (not scratch or prick testing) may be required.
What is the treatment for eczema?
The treatment of acute eczema requires repeated cycles of application of dilute aqueous solutions followed by evaporation. This is most often conveniently performed by placing the affected body part in front of a fan after the compress. Once the acute weeping has diminished, then topical steroids (such as triamcinolone cream) application can be an effective treatment. In extensive disease, systemic steroids may need to be utilized either orally or by an injection (shot).
What are home remedies for eczema?
Mild eczema may respond to compresses composed of tepid water followed by room air evaporation. Chronic eczema can be improved by applying water followed by a stiff emollient like petroleum jelly.
Next: Does diet affect eczema?
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