What is eczema?
Atopic eczema is a skin condition that causes the skin to become itchy, red, flaky and dry. It is most commonly found on the creases of the elbows, back of the knees and one the hands and can cause significant discomfort and disruption to daily life. It is a long lasting disease that can occur at any age but is commonly found in young children.
Treatment for eczema
Following a clinical examination by a consultant dermatologist you may require one or more of several types of treatment options to manage the eczema.
These may include:
- Topical emollients (moisturisers) to keep the skin moist and acting as an effective barrier
- Topical steroid creams to treat itching, redness, soreness and weeping
- Topical calcineurin inhibitors (an alternative to steroid creams)
- Antiseptic preparations to reduce bacteria on the skin
- Bandages or dressing to help the creams to penetrate and to protect the skin
- Antibiotic creams if the skin is infected
Treatment with ultraviolet light, either UVA or UVB to reduce itching and improve the eczema.
- Antibiotic creams or tablets, if the skin is infected
- There are a number of immunosuppressive medications for patients with severe eczema, which are prescribed by consultant dermatologists with close supervision and monitoring
Eczema is a long term condition that requires managing on an on-going basis. Treatment can help to control and reduce the symptoms when they occur and to reduce the likelihood and severity of flare ups.