Eczema Def: The meaning of the word “eczema” can cause confusion. Many people use this word to refer to a common skin condition called atopic dermatitis. When this is the meaning, the words “eczema/atopic dermatitis” may be used. The word “eczema” also has a more general meaning. Eczema can mean a family of skin conditions that causes the skin to become swollen, irritated, and itchy.
Eczema Causes: The exact cause of eczema is unknown, but it's thought to be linked to an overactive response by the body's immune system to unknown triggers. In addition, eczema is commonly found in families with a history of other allergies or asthma. Some people may suffer "flare-ups" of the itchy rash in response to certain substances or conditions. For some, coming into contact with rough or coarse materials may cause the skin to become itchy.
Eczema Causes: For others, feeling too hot or too cold, exposure to certain household products like soap or detergent, or coming into contact with animal dander may cause an outbreak. Upper respiratory infections or colds may also be triggers. Stress may cause the condition to worsen. Although there is no cure, most people can effectively manage their disease with medical treatment and by avoiding irritants. The condition is not contagious and can't be spread from person to person.
Eczema Pathogenesis: In the acute stage oedema of the epidermis progresses to intra-epidermal vesicles. In chronic stage more thickening of epidermis is accompanied by a variable degree of vasodilatation and T-helper lymphocytic infiltration in the upper dermis.
Eczema Clinical feature: Itchy rash Vesicles or bullae may appear in the acute stage if inflammation is intense In subacute eczema the skin may be erythematous, dry and flaky, odematousanddcustered. Chronic persistent eczema by thickened.
Eczema Investigation: Patch tests IgE antibody test Prick tests Swab for C/S
Eczema Management: A)General measures for all types of eczema Explanation, reassurance and encouragement Avoidance of contact with irritants Use of tropical steroids -1% hydrocortisone applied twice daily
Eczema Management: B)Specifics measures Irritant contact eczema- use of barrier cream and protective clothing Allergic contact eczema- avoidance of the culprit allergens C)Atopic eczema- -avoidance of allergens -regular use of emollients Systemic antibiotics
Eczema Management: D)Seborrhoeic eczema- local antiseptic, steroid and antifungal steroid E)Gravitional eczema- local steroids, elimination of edema by graded compression bandage.