if I have eczema?
If the diagnosis is eczema, the dermatologist will explain what type
of eczema you have and prescribe an appropriate treatment plan.
Before prescribing a treatment plan, a dermatologist considers the
type of eczema, extent and severity of the eczema, patientís medical
history, and a number of other factors. Medication and other
therapies will be prescribed as needed to:
It is important
to realize that in most cases no one treatment will be effective.
Medical research continues to show that the most effective treatment
plan for eczema ó regardless of type ó involves using a combination
of therapies to treat the skin and making lifestyle changes to
control flare-ups. Doing so tends to increase effectiveness and
reduce side effects from medications.
The type of medication prescribed will depend on many factors,
including the type of eczema, past treatment, and the patientís
preference. Topical (applied to the skin) medication is frequently
prescribed. If the eczema is more severe, phototherapy (a type of
treatment that uses light therapy) or systemic (circulates
throughout the body) medication may be prescribed.
Today, there are many effective therapies available to treat the
different types of eczema. With proper treatment, most eczema can be
Keep in mind that eczema can be stubborn. If the signs and symptoms
persist, be sure to tell your dermatologist. Sometimes it helps to
change how you use the medications or to set aside more time for
relaxing activities. Stress triggers flare-ups in many people.
Others find relief with stronger medication. Keeping a diary to
learn what triggers the eczema and avoiding these triggers helps
others. A dermatologist can work with you to tailor a treatment plan
that meets your needs.
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developed by the American Academy of Dermatology