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Eczema is a chronic inflammation of the outer layers of the skin. It is most common in infants and children. It can occur in adults. This condition is not contagious. Eczema is also known as atopic dermatitis.
The exact cause of eczema is unknown. Factors that may contribute to eczema include:
Factors that increase your chance of eczema:
Your doctor will ask about your symptoms and medical history. A physical exam will be done. You may be referred to specialist. A dermatologist focuses on skin disorders. An allergist focuses on allergies.
The symptoms vary from person to person. Scratching and rubbing can cause or worsen some of the symptoms. Symptoms include:
It is difficult to prevent eczema. This is most true when there is a strong family history.
You may be able to reduce your child’s risk of eczema by:
If you already have eczema, there are several things you can do to try to control it:
The main goals of eczema treatment are to:
Treatment options may vary. Your doctor may recommend more than one depending on your condition. They include:
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