Eczema refers to a series of skin conditions that are caused by various allergic reactions or, at times, the body's response to an immune system deficiency. The result can be inflammation of the skin, redness, and itchy patches similar to dermatitis. In many cases, the inflammation itself is dermatitis. This can occur anywhere on your body, including the hands, face, neck, or other areas. Atopic dermatitis is the most common type and is usually the result of an allergic reaction. This condition generally starts in childhood. At the Dermatology and Skin Cancer Institute of Greater Philadelphia, led by Dr. Aradhna Saxena, we will diagnose exactly what is causing the condition so that an accurate treatment plan can be created and carried out.
"My teenage daughter and I are both patients of Dr. Kasper. The reception area is modern and bright. The reception area staff is always welcoming. Dr. Kasper is friendly and efficient. Wait time is short, which I appreciate. I am thinking about booking an aesthetician appointment or two in the near future."- M.A. / Yelp / Jun 30, 2019
"Wonderful experience, and I had skin cancer removed. From top to bottom, everyone I dealt with was professional and friendly. Exceptionally knowledgeable and helpful with clear and direct communication. Dr. Saxena is an amazing doc - I chose this office specifically because they had removed a spot for me about three years ago and I’m happy to say the experience was even better this time. A quick note on their COVID-19 procedure. Suffice it to say I am just as happy with the procedure they have in place. I felt safe the whole time. Very professional and comfortable."- M.S. / Google / Nov 03, 2020
"Dr. Kasper is a great physician. He takes the time to truly get to know his patients. He does a great job teaching his patients and answering their questions. The staff is very helpful as well. I highly recommend this clinic!"- S.M. / Google / Nov 02, 2020
"I saw Dr. David Kasper and he was excellent! He was polite, answered every question and took his time with me. It was a great experience!"- J.D. / Google / Oct 29, 2020
"I’ve been going to the Lansdale location for years for my annual skin check. This was postponed during COVID, but the staff set up a telemedicine visit for a new issue before I could get there in person. They made this simple! My annual check was done by a mew PA with them (but not new to derm), Charlie, and he took the time and was patient in answering all of my questions during the exam. Also can’t say enough for their COVID preparedness - no one had to touch my ID & insurance card, they had q-tips to use and dispose of for use of the tablets and sample bags pre-made since the sample jars are gone to keep everyone safe."- J.B. / Google / Oct 27, 2020
Doctors aren't entirely sure what causes eczema, but it's believed to be triggered by a number of factors. Immune system abnormalities, genetics, the environment, skin irritants, and skin barrier defects are the most common believed causes. Family genetics can also play a role, because certain genes can cause patients to have extremely sensitive skin. A patient with relatives who suffer from asthma or allergies are at a higher risk for developing eczema.
Eczema is most commonly characterized by dry, itchy, or red skin, as well as persistent rashes. In most cases, your skin will begin to itch before a rash appears. Most patients experience patches of skin that are chronically itchy, dry, or thickened. These patches can appear anywhere but mostly occur on the face, neck, hands, or legs. With children, these patches can appear on the inner creases of the knees and elbows. Once the skin is scratched, dry patches and open sores with crust could develop and could become infected. Severe symptoms could include pus-filled blisters or a yellowish to light-brown crust developing over existing eczema patches, which could be a sign of a bacterial infection.
Eczema can be treated with a variety of over-the-counter or prescription medication and ointments. Hydrocortisone creams and ointments can be used, as well as antihistamines such as Benadryl, to help relieve symptoms. Prescription medications, including steroid creams or immunomodulators, may help those with severe eczema. An oral steroid or corticosteroid may also be prescribed. In extreme cases, ultraviolet light therapy or laser treatment may also be applied to the affected areas. When other alternatives have failed, immunosuppressants may be prescribed, since these drugs suppress the immune system.
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Whether you have suffered from eczema for years with little to no relief or have just recently noticed an itchy rash and a difference in your skin, there are numerous treatment options available. Employing a multi-level treatment approach that includes prevention, detection, and treatment allows you to not only manage your eczema but also enjoy a significant decrease in symptoms. Seek relief from your eczema-related symptoms today at the Dermatology and Skin Cancer Institute.