ATOPIC DERMATITIS (ECZEMA)
Fiona walked into a pharmacy requesting to see a pharmacist in private.
The pharmacist took her to the consulting room and asked what her complains were,
Fiona replied, “I have been having recurrent eruptions on my skin which comes at a particular time of the year and it’s really embarrassing, it’s limiting my wardrobe options. I can hardly see my fiancé for the fear that he would contact it or think I’m untidy. Its really messing things up for me, what can I do about my situation, I really do need help”.
The Pharmacist empathized with her and asked if she had other allergies or if anyone in her family suffered from the same ailment or have allergies, she then responded that her dad used to be asthmatic as a young man though his attacks are less frequent now.
The pharmacist further asked if she has any other symptoms of which she responded that heating aggravates the eruption,and that when she sweats it really itches and it gets worse.
The pharmacist then explained that her symptoms were most likely eczema of which she can go to the dermatologist for further diagnosis, but she could get some over-the-counter medications that could relief her symptoms such as hydrocortisone 1% cream.
She was further advised that although there is no cure, most people can effectively manage their disease with medical treatment and by avoiding irritants and said the condition was not contagious and cannot be spread from person to person.
Fiona was told that to prevent further flare ups she has to;
Moisturize frequently, avoid sudden changes in temperature or humidity, avoid sweating
or overheating, reduce stress
, avoid scratchy materials such as wool, avoid harsh soaps, detergents, and solvents, be aware of any foods that may cause an outbreak and avoid those foods.
The Doctor’s Desk.
Here is a doctor’s angle on atopic dermatitis (Eczema).
Atopy literally means “out of place”, “unusual”, “extraordinary”. Dermatitis means an inflammation of the skin characterized by redness, swelling, pain and warmness.
Atopic Dermatitis is one of the symptoms of Atopic Syndrome; which may occur in any organ of the body expressing exaggerative reaction to an allergen. Atopic Dermatitis can also be referred to as hyper allergic/hypersensitivity reaction that occur on the skin following contact or exposure to an allergen.
Genetic predisposition or hereditary factor is of utmost importance as it runs in the family but sometimes skips generation. Persons with AD can also be presented with hay fever, allergic conjunctivitis or allergic asthma. Sometimes these three conditions occur together and can be predisposed by the same allergen.
AD is a type 1 hypersensitivity reaction caused by exposure of the skin to pollen, dander, dust mites, certain food ingestions, chemicals, physical irritants or an infected skin. After exposure the skin becomes raised, red, warm, painful and sometimes itching. It can be localized or extensive depending on the duration of contact with allergen.
Treatment is aimed at reducing the immune response to stimuli by the use of immune modulators, corticosteroids, avoidance of dry skin, avoidance of allergen and irritants.
Doctor Badmus Olowu
& Pharm Izehi Umolu