Atopic Dermatitis (Eczema)
Atopic dermatitis is an inflammatory skin disease.
It stems from a mixture of:
1. Genetic susceptibility
2. Defects in the innate immune system
3. Increased immunologic responses to allergens.
Most patients show signs of skin disease before age 5.
Lesions have a different appearance based on the duration (acute versus subacute versus chronic) and the age of the patient.
Young patients often have a rash on the face and extensor surfaces, while adults have a rash on the flexural surfaces of the elbows and knees.
1. Atopic dermatitis is commonly associated with a personal and family history of asthma and allergic rhinitis (atopic triad)
2. Decreased skin barrier protection leads to an increased risk of secondary bacterial infection.
3. Preventive treatment includes moisturizers and avoidance of known triggers.
4. Subacute or chronic lesions are treated with topical corticosteroids.