Skin Conditions – Eczema

Eczema is a chronic recurring skin condition that causes the skin to become red, itchy, scaly, dry and peeling. There are many forms of eczema, but atopic eczema is one of the most common. It mainly affects children but can persist into adulthood. Common sites are the inside of the elbows, behind the knees, side of the neck and around the eyes and ears. The exact cause of eczema is not clear but it tends to run in families. Patients with allergies (eg asthma, allergic rhinitis) are more prone to developing it.

Other than using emollients, your dermatologist can prescribe certain topical corticosteroids, antihistamines and antibiotics to alleviate the condition. Different types of medications are needed for different parts of the body. The aim of the treatment is to heal the skin and prevent future flare-ups. It is safe to use corticosteroids for a short while under the guidance of your dermatologist.

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