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Types of Eczema

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Dyshidrotic Dermatitis

This type of eczema affects the hands and feet. The cause is unknown.

The first symptom may be severe itching. Blisters may then appear, which give way a few weeks later to scaly patches. Sometimes deep cracks can appear on the hands or fingers.

This type of eczema may become chronic and painful.

Treatments include:

  • Cool, wet compresses
  • Steroid drugs that are rubbed onto the skin or taken by mouth
  • Psoralen combined with ultraviolet A therapy

 

Nummular Dermatitis

This type of eczema more often affects men than women. Men usually don't get their first outbreak before their mid-50s. Women tend to get it in their teen years or early adulthood.

Nummular dermatitis causes coin-shaped red marks. The marks appear most often on the:

  • legs
  • backs of the hands
  • forearms
  • lower back
  • hips

The cause of nummular dermatitis is unknown. However, factors that may raise the chance that an outbreak will strike include:

  • cold, dry air
  • exposure to chemicals such as formaldehyde
  • exposure to metals, including nickel

Treatments for nummular dermatitis include:

  • Protecting your skin from scratches and other injuries
  • Taking a lukewarm bath or shower, then applying a moisturizer to your skin
  • Applying a steroid ointment to the rash
  • Taking a steroid medication by mouth or injection that goes to work throughout your body
  • Taking antibiotics if an infection develops

 

Neurodermatitis

People with this type of eczema develop skin irritation in spots that they frequently scratch out of habit.

This type of eczema often affects these areas:

  • back
  • sides or back of the neck
  • genitals
  • scalp
  • wrists
  • ankles
  • inside and behind the ear

People may scratch affected areas during the day without realizing it. They may also scratch while asleep.

Usually, neurodermatitis causes a skin outbreak that doesn't get any bigger. But the irritated skin can grow thick and deeply wrinkled. Infections may also develop in the irritated areas.

The main treatment for this type of eczema is to stop scratching it. In the meantime, steroid medicines that are rubbed onto the skin can help treat symptoms.

When neurodermatitis affects the scalp, it can be harder to treat. In these cases, it may require the steroid medication prednisone, which is taken by mouth.

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