Dyshidrotic Dermatitis - Prevention Tips and Treatment Methods

By: Juliet Cohen

Dyshidrotic dermatitis, also known as pompholyx. It is a skin condition and characterized by small blisters on the hands or feet. About 8 to 25 percent of people worldwide have atopic dermatitis (eczema). It often occurs in people who have other allergic disorders. Dyshidrotic dermatitis often appears during times of stress. Hereditary factors appear to play a strong role. In children, eczema is often linked to food allergies. Common food allergens include milk, egg whites, wheat, corn, soybeans, and peanuts. Symptoms of dyshidrotic dermatitis include blisters may itch, cause pain, or produce no symptoms at all. Scratching blisters breaks them, releasing the fluid inside, causing the skin to crust and eventually crack.

Fluid from the blisters is serum that accumulates between the irritated skin cells. Nails on affected fingers, or toes, may take on a pitted appearance. Blisters are opaque and deep-seated; they are either flush with the skin or slightly elevated and do not break easily. Females tend to develop dyshidrotic dermatitis more frequently than males. Smoking as well as taking aspirin or an oral contraceptive increases the risk. Most attacks resolve spontaneously within 1-3 weeks, but since the rash can be intensely itchy. Medications may be used to speed healing or control the itching. Nutritional deficiencies may be related, so addressing diet and vitamin intake is helpful. Oral steroids occasionally are used to treat a flare of chronic eczema.

Plantain (Plantago major) infused in olive or other oil can be soothing. Wear waterproof gloves while peeling and squeezing lemons, oranges, or grapefruit, peeling potatoes, and handling tomatoes. High strength topical steroids are often used to control itching. Ultraviolet light therapy (phototherapy) can effectively control atopic dermatitis. Avoid Purell and other hand sanitizing products which contain alcohol. Wash affected hands and feet with cool water and apply a moisturizer as soon as possible. Protect the skin from further injury. Using gloves to protect the hands from irritants and allergens. The topical antifungal cream ketoconazole appears to be as effective as topical steroids for the treatment of seborrheic dermatitis.

Dyshidrotic Dermatitis - Prevention and Treatment Tips

1. Topical medication, such as pramoxine, can help relieve pain and itch.

2. Avoid Purell and other hand sanitizing products which contain alcohol.

3. Aluminum chloride 20% (Drysol) may help in cases made worse by sweating.

4. Ciclosporin a strong immunosuppressant drug used to combat dyshidrosis caused by ulcerative colitis.

5. Avoid metal computer keyboards and track pads which contain nickel.

6. Apply the dampened fabric to the affected skin.

7. Efalizumab (Raptiva) a medication used to treat psoriasis.

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