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Key Information About Atopic Dermatitis

Updated on July 20, 2019
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Srikanth is passionate about helping people improve their quality of life.

Atopic dermatitis is a common skin disease characterized by areas of severe itching, redness, scaling, and loss of the surface of the skin.

The prevalence of this chronic condition is estimated to be 15-20 percent in children and 1-3 percent in adults. The incidence has increased by 2- to 3-fold during the past decades in industrialized nations.

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Wikimedia Commons | Source

Causes

Atopic dermatitis is caused by a combination of factors that include genetics, abnormal functioning of the immune system, environment, activities that may cause skin to be more sensitive, and defects in the skin barrier that allow moisture out and germs in.

Source

Triggers

Exposure to allergens (like pollen, pet dander or peanuts), stress, dry skin, some fabrics, soaps, household cleaners and infection are known triggers for this relapsing skin disease.

Symptoms

Symptoms include dry skin; itching, which may be severe, especially at night; red to brownish-gray patches, especially on the hands, feet, ankles, wrists, neck, upper chest, eyelids, inside the bend of the elbows and knees, and in infants, the face and scalp; small, raised bumps, which may leak fluid and crust over when scratched; thickened, cracked, scaly skin; and raw, sensitive, swollen skin from scratching.

Diagnosis

Doctors will be able to diagnose this condition by examination. As part of the exam, they will review the patient's medical history. They may order blood and skin patch tests to rule out other conditions.

Treatment

Antihistamine pills, moisturizer, prednisone or corticosteroid may be used to treat this skin condition. Oatmeal baths provide relief from discomfort.

Wet dressings with black tea could offer an effective, well-tolerated and low-cost treatment for facial atopic dermatitis, a study published in Journal of Dermatological Treatment suggests.

Regeneron Pharmaceuticals and Sanofi announced in July 2019 that the European Medicines Agency's Committee for Medicinal Products for Human Use (CHMP) has adopted a positive opinion for Dupixent® (dupilumab), recommending to extend its approval in the European Union to include adolescents 12 to 17 years of age with moderate-to-severe atopic dermatitis who are candidates for systemic therapy.

Coconut oil, which is good for the skin, is used to treat atopic dermatitis.

Do you use coconut oil?

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Prevention

Evidence for various existing disease prevention strategies (like avoidance of allergens and dietary interventions) has been unconvincing and inconsistent.

Fresh approaches to prevent the disease include trying to induce tolerance to allergens in early life, and enhancing the defective skin barrier to reduce skin inflammation, sensitisation and subsequent allergic disease.

Avoid long, hot baths. Use lukewarm water instead. Keep the room temperature as regular as possible. Use moisturizers several times daily.

Summary

Atopic dermatitis is a skin disease.

Stress can trigger this condition.

Scaly skin is a symptom of atopic dermatitis.

It is diagnosed by examination.

Prednisone may be used to treat this disease.

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and does not substitute for diagnosis, prognosis, treatment, prescription, and/or dietary advice from a licensed health professional. Drugs, supplements, and natural remedies may have dangerous side effects. If pregnant or nursing, consult with a qualified provider on an individual basis. Seek immediate help if you are experiencing a medical emergency.

© 2019 Srikanth R

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    • srirad0675 profile imageAUTHOR

      Srikanth R 

      4 weeks ago

      Thank you.

    • Lorna Lamon profile image

      Lorna Lamon 

      4 weeks ago

      This is a very informative article with good treatment tips. I use coconut oil for just about everything in particular the skin. Thank you for sharing.

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