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    Susan Evans, MD posted:
    Dear Readers,

    One of the most common problems dermatologists see is atopic dermatitis, more commonly known as eczema.

    This is a chronic condition. Once you show signs/symptoms of it, you will likely have them on and off for the rest of your life. There seems to be a correlation between eczema and other allergic conditions such as hay fever and asthma. Some theories suggest that eczema patients have a faulty immune system and their body is working against them.

    Typically eczema is found on arms and behind the knees, but it can erupt just about anywhere on the body. Most patients experience flare-ups when it becomes really painful and difficult to manage, and then for no explicable reason it subsides.

    When you are having a flare-up, it is suggested that you avoid using harsh soaps or other irritants that will further dry your skin. Some patients find some measure of relief with creams or ointments.

    If you are having symptoms that distract you from your daily life or if the itching is preventing you from sleeping, it's time to make an appointment with your doctor to see what can be done for you.

    Each patient is unique, and your doctor will take a complete medical history, and make treatment recommendations based on those findings. Many times the first treatment course does not provide adequate relief. Rather than going to a new doctor, go back to your original doctor. All the original findings are in your chart and you won't have to start from the beginning again.

    There are a number of treatment choices available. Discuss your specific situation with your doctor and choose the one that seems the best for you.


    Dr. Evans
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    MissPoPo responded:
    Hello Dr. Evans. I have had my many bouts with eczema all throughout my life. For about a month now my skin has become very itchy and a bump or two appears at the sites of where I have been scratching. It's not that many bumps but they have been a concern to me. Does that describe any other stages of eczema that I may be unaware of? Is this a concern that I should take to my doctor?
    Susan Evans, MD replied to MissPoPo's response:
    Dear Miss PoPo,

    This could be a manifestation of your eczema, but as it is slightly different from the usual presentation for you, it might be a good idea to have your doctor evaluate it.


    Dr. Evans

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