The theme of world allergy week 2018 was Atopic Dermatitis /eczema: An itch that rashes. As part of the continuum of management of patients with atopic eczema, I would like to present the Indian scenario. Atopic Dermatitis, a common, chronic inflammatory skin disease affecting children and adults, is a global health problem with significant comorbidities. Around 30%of children with eczema have a food sensitivity which can make eczema symptoms worsen. Atopic eczema, also called atopic dermatitis, is a common allergic skin disease that usually starts in early childhood. It can be associated with infection (bacteria, fungi, yeast and viruses) of the skin. Half of patients with moderate to severe eczema also suffer from asthma, hay fever (allergic rhinitis), and food allergies. The main symptom is itchy skin. Skin is also often dry. Scratching makes the skin red, chafed and thick. In infants and children the rash usually occurs on the scalp, knees, elbows and cheeks. In adults the rash can occur on the creases of wrists, elbows, knees, ankles, face and neck.
Management of Atopic Eczema:
- Education of the caregivers on the proper management of this skin problem.
- Identification and avoidance of triggers that can make the disease worse.
- Maintenance of the skin barrier function with cleaning with hypoallergenic cleaners.
- Combating dryness with emollients or skin barrier creams which has property to provide lubrication, prevent water loss or hydrate the skin and keep it moisturized.
- Anti-inflammatory agents like mild potency corticosteroids or calcineurin inhibitors.