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Eczema
(DR004)

Introduction


Eczema is the most common inflammatory disease of the skin. Also known as atopic dermatitis (AD), this condition affects 15 million adults and children - 6% of all Americans. It nearly always begins within the first 5 years of life and while 50% of cases will be outgrown, the remainder will persist throughout a lifetime. The exact cause of the condition is not known, but genetic factors are thought to play a role in the development of this disease.

Persons with eczema often have allergies or asthma, as well. Various materials such as wool can cause a worsening of symptoms.

Eczema or AD appears as redness, scaling and/or small blisters (vesicles) on the head, face, neck, or the insides of the elbows, wrists, and knees. These characteristic features are often masked by secondary lesions such as crusting, excoriations, infection, or irritation from topical treatments. There are three stages of eczematous inflammation.

There is no cure for AD or eczema. Current therapy is directed at suppressing the inflammation and reducing triggering factors with topical treatments and ultraviolet light therapy.

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The Medifocus Guide on Eczema provides answers to the following important questions and medical issues:


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This MediFocus Guide contains an extensive listing of citations and abstracts of recent journal articles that have been published about this condition in trustworthy medical journals. This is the same type of information that is available to physicians and other health care professionals. A partial selection of journal articles that are abstracted in this MediFocus Guide includes:


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