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Skin fungus vs eczema: Fungal Skin Infection vs. Eczema: Differences


So when is that itch a fungus?

Would you know how to treat that itch?

What do jock itch, ringworm, thrush and athlete’s foot have in common? They all cause itching, but there is another thing – they often get mistaken for eczema or psoriasis.

If the above-mentioned conditions all cause similar symptoms, why can’t we treat them the same? Surely a cream for eczema or skin dryness fights any sort of skin condition? The answer is it doesn’t work that way.

What is a fungal infection?

Fungal infections are caused by fungi, a group of microscopic organisms that thrive on the dead keratin of the skin, hair or nails.

Fungal infections can spread from one person to another, or through public spaces such as shared showers or swimming pools.

Different fungi cause different fungal infections. One of the most common forms of fungal infections is athlete’s foot (tinea pedis), which is caused by ringworm and causes redness, itching and peeling around the toes.

                                                           Athlete’s foot between the toes

What is eczema?

Eczema is a disease caused by inflammation of the skin and the skin’s inability to retain adequate moisture. The result is a dry, troublesome rash that itches, which may occur on almost any part of the body.

The redness, itchiness and rash caused by eczema isn’t contagious. Eczema is not related to fungus, but it’s possible to also have a fungal infection on top of eczema. In that case, your doctor will have to take a skin swab to determine whether a fungal infection is present or not.

Eczema tends to appear on the face and scalp of babies and in places where the skin creases or folds in adults, such as the back of the knees or elbows, between the fingers or on ankles and wrists.

Doctors aren’t sure what exactly causes eczema, but there are many allergens and irritants that can trigger a flare-up. Eczema is also most likely to be inherited.

                                                          Eczema up close

What is psoriasis?

Just like eczema, psoriasis is also a chronic skin disease that causes redness and flaking. Psoriasis can affect big patches of skin all over the body, but can also occur on fingernails, toenails and around joints.

Psoriasis usually starts as one or more small psoriatic plaques – dark-pink, raised patches of skin with overlying silvery flaky scales – usually on the scalp, knees, elbows, back and buttocks. It can also occur in the eyebrows, armpits, navel and groin. It’s more likely to flake, while itching is uncommon.

Recent research has shown that psoriasis is a disorder of the immune system. A type of white-blood cell, called a T cell, helps protect the body against infection and disease. Abnormalities in the so-called T helper cells and the way that they interact with skin cells are associated with psoriasis.

                                                   A plaque of psoriasis on the hand 

How to find the correct treatment

  • Consult your doctor or dermatologist for the right treatment. A fungal infection sometimes requires an oral antibiotic.
  • Consider the duration of the symptoms. Eczema and psoriasis are chronic, while a fungal infection, although it may reoccur, can be eliminated.
  • If your symptoms don’t respond to an over-the-counter treatment, see a doctor. 

Image credit: iStock

Ringworm vs. Eczema: What’s the Difference?

If you have any medical questions or concerns, please talk to your healthcare provider. The articles on Health Guide are underpinned by peer-reviewed research and information drawn from medical societies and governmental agencies. However, they are not a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment.

You’ve got an itchy, red, uncomfortable rash on your skin, and it’s driving you crazy. But what is it? Could it be ringworm or eczema? How can you tell the difference? Let’s go head-to-head on ringworm vs. eczema.

Unlike the name might suggest, ringworm is not caused by a worm but by a group of fungi known as dermatophytes. The actual fungal infection is referred to in medical terms as dermatophytosis or tinea, usually followed by a Latin word that designates its location. Some examples of common fungal infections include tinea pedis (athlete’s foot), tinea cruris (jock itch), or tinea corporis (ringworm on the body) (Leung, 2020).

  • Ringworm and eczema are two different skin diseases that come with itching, redness, and a rash.
  • Ringworm is contagious and caused by a fungus.
  • Eczema is not contagious and includes a group of skin conditions that cause skin inflammation

Ringworm shows up in different ways depending on the location of the body but is almost always characterized by itching, redness, and scaling. 

Ringworm is contagious. A person can be infected in several ways, including skin-to-skin contact, by touching contaminated objects (brushes, hats, clothes, towels), and coming in contact with an infected pet. Ringworm is quite common in cows, dogs, and cats, so farmers or people involved with animal rescue shelters could become infected (Newbury, 2014).


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According to the American Academy of Dermatology Association (AAD), ringworm of the body (tinea corporis) forms distinctive red, scaly, circular patches that often have a slightly raised red border with a center that is less red or with normal-appearing skin (AAD, n.d.-a). The raised circular border appears as a “ring” shape, giving rise to the term ringworm (Yee, 2021). In medicine, no one thought it to be associated with actual worms of any description (Homei, 2013).

Ringworm of the scalp (tinea capitis) is most common in children between 3 and 14 but can affect any age group. It causes patches of scaling, an itchy scalp, and hair loss in the affected areas (Al Aboud, 2020). Jock itch is most common in adult males and adolescents. It appears as an itchy rash starting in the groin and extending down the insides of one or both thighs. It can even affect the area around the anus (Pippin, 2020). Athlete’s foot is very common and usually affects the areas between the toes, causing intense itching, scaly patches, and redness (Nigam, 2020). 

Ringworm can also affect the nails (tinea unguium), which is known as onychomycosis. Infected fingernails become brittle, white, and opaque, but infected toenails, while brittle, are usually thick and yellow (Leung, 2020).

In contrast to ringworm, eczema is a non-contagious group of skin disorders with irritated, inflamed skin. Eczema is not just one disease, but a family of skin diseases. It includes various conditions, such as atopic dermatitis and contact dermatitis, which are the most common ones. Nummular eczema is less common than other types of eczema, but it can be confused with ringworm (AAD, n.d.-b). 

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These various eczema types present differently and have different triggers. Still, they all have some degree of dry skin, itching, and redness in common. 

  • Atopic dermatitis (also sometimes called atopic eczema) is the most common type of eczema. It affects mostly children, with dry, itchy patches on the face and scalp. Older children and teens may develop patches in joint creases, such as elbows, knees, and neck (Kolb, 2020). Adults can also develop atopic dermatitis, with up to 25% of adult cases thought to be new-onset atopic dermatitis (Lee, 2019).
  • Contact dermatitis is just what its name implies—a rash that develops from contact with an irritating substance such as poison ivy, make-up, jewelry, nickel, and latex gloves. Itching and burning, hives, scaly skin, and a red swollen rash are common (AAD, n.d.-b).
  • Nummular eczema, also known as discoid eczema, gets its name from the Latin word for “coin-shaped,” as this form of eczema consists of round or oval patches of red skin, which can be intensely itchy (Hardin, 2021). The patches appear red, brown, or pink and commonly show up on the arms, legs, hands, feet, and torso. Because of their round or oval shape, nummular eczema lesions can be easily confused with ringworm (AAD, n.d.-b).

A primary care provider can usually diagnose ringworm, especially if the lesion presents as a classic circular patch with a raised red border and a clearing center. If the skin symptoms are less clear, you may need to see a dermatologist. They can examine a small skin scraping under a microscope or send the scraping to a laboratory for a fungal culture (Petrucelli, 2020).

In many cases, ringworm can be treated with creams, lotions, or powders containing antifungals such as clotrimazole or miconazole, and many of those treatments are available over the counter. If the infection does not respond well to that treatment, your healthcare provider may prescribe a cream containing a higher concentration of antifungal medication. Sometimes, oral antifungals, such as griseofulvin, fluconazole, terbinafine, or itraconazole, are necessary to clear up the infection. That’s the case when the lesion is recurrent, chronic, or doesn’t get better after using prescription-strength topical antifungal products (Leung, 2020).

In addition to antifungals, your healthcare provider might recommend hygiene measures that make the growing conditions for the fungus unfavorable. These include wearing well-ventilated clothing, avoiding bandaging the area, and changing damp or wet clothes frequently. 

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Since ringworm is contagious, it is essential to prevent reinfecting yourself as well as passing the fungus on to others (Ely, 2014). According to the American Academy of Dermatology (AAD), a person with ringworm should avoid touching the rash and wash their hands frequently. Bedding, as well as clothing, should be washed frequently in detergent and hot water. You should wear shower shoes at the gym or pool locker rooms, and a shower should be taken after a workout, followed by changing into clean clothes (AAD, n.d.-a).

Let’s say you go to your general healthcare provider with a rash, and the treatments they try don’t work. In that case, you’ll likely be referred to a dermatologist who will take a thorough medical and family history, conduct a physical exam, and may run tests to look for common allergens. 

Since there is no definitive cure for eczema, the goal is to control the symptoms, including itchiness. Many treatments are available to help you maintain a good quality of life and ease symptoms like itchiness. You may benefit from a combination of lifestyle, over-the-counter, and prescription therapies. Treatment consists of (AAD, n.d.-b): 

  • Medications such as topical corticosteroids and antihistamines can help reduce the swelling, itch, and tenderness.
  • Home remedies (moisturizers, cool compresses, cool-mist humidifier).
  • Identification and removal of irritants
  • Stress control

Also, research into new therapies continues (Fishbein, 2020). Some dermatologists see positive results in atopic dermatitis using phototherapy if first-line treatments have failed (Sidbury, 2014).

If you think you may have ringworm or eczema, see your healthcare provider for a proper diagnosis and treatment plan.

  1. Al Aboud AM, Crane JS. Tinea Capitis. [Updated 2020 Aug 10]. In: StatPearls. Treasure Island (FL): StatPearls Publishing; 2021 Jan-. Retrieved from: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK536909/
  2. American Academy of Dermatology (AAD). (n.d.-a). A to Z Diseases: Ringworm. Retrieved on Apr 8, 2021 from https://www.aad.org/public/diseases/a-z/ringworm-overview
  3. American Academy of Dermatology (AAD). (n.d.-b). Eczema Resource Center. Retrieved on Feb 8, 2021 from https://www.aad.org/public/diseases/eczema/
  4. Ely, JW, Rosenfeld, S., Stone, M.S. (2014). Diagnosis and Management of Tinea Infections. American Family Physician;90(10):702-711. Retrieved on February 8, 2021 from https://www.aafp.org/afp/2014/1115/p702.html
  5. Fishbein, A. B., Silverberg, J. I., Wilson, E. J., & Ong, P. Y. (2020). Update on Atopic Dermatitis: Diagnosis, Severity Assessment, and Treatment Selection. The journal of allergy and clinical immunology. In practice, 8(1), 91–101. Retrieved from https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S221321981930635X?via%3Dihub
  6. Hardin CA, Love LW, Farci F. Nummular Dermatitis. [Updated 2021 Jan 5]. In: StatPearls [Internet]. Treasure Island (FL): StatPearls Publishing; 2021 Jan-. Available from: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK565878/
  7. Homei A, Worboys M. (2013). Fungal Disease in Britain and the United States 1850–2000: Mycoses and Modernity. Basingstoke (UK): Palgrave Macmillan; 2013. Chapter 1, Ringworm: A Disease of Schools and Mass Schooling. Retrieved from: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK169210/
  8. Kolb L, Ferrer-Bruker SJ. Atopic Dermatitis. [Updated 2020 Aug 13]. In: StatPearls [Internet]. Treasure Island (FL): StatPearls Publishing; 2021 Jan-. Available from: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK448071/
  9. Lee HH, Patel KR, Singam V, Rastogi S, Silverberg JI. (2019). A systematic review and meta-analysis of the prevalence and phenotype of adult-onset atopic dermatitis. Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology;80(6):1526-1532.e7. doi: 10.1016/j.jaad.2018.05.1241. Retrieved from https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/29864464/
  10. Leung, A., Lam, J. M., Leong, K. F., Hon, K. L., Barankin, B., Leung, A., & Wong, A. (2020). Onychomycosis: An Updated Review. Recent patents on inflammation & allergy drug discovery, 14(1), 32–45. doi: 10.2174/1872213X13666191026090713. Retrieved from https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/31738146/
  11. Leung, A. K., Lam, J. M., Leong, K. F., & Hon, K. L. (2020). Tinea corporis: an updated review. Drugs in context, 9, 2020-5-6. doi: 10.7573/dic.2020-5-6. Retrieved from https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/32742295/
  12. Newbury, S., & Moriello, K. A. (2014). Feline dermatophytosis: steps for investigation of a suspected shelter outbreak. Journal of feline medicine and surgery, 16(5), 407–418. doi: 10.1177/1098612X14530213. Retrieved from https://journals.sagepub.com/doi/10.1177/1098612X14530213
  13. Nigam PK, Saleh D. Tinea Pedis. [Updated 2020 Sep 8]. In: StatPearls [Internet]. Treasure Island (FL): StatPearls Publishing; 2021 Jan-. Retrieved from: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK470421/
  14. Petrucelli, M. F., Abreu, M. H., Cantelli, B., Segura, G. G., Nishimura, F. G., Bitencourt, T. A., et al. (2020). Epidemiology and Diagnostic Perspectives of Dermatophytoses. Journal of fungi (Basel, Switzerland), 6(4), 310. doi: 10.3390/jof6040310. Retrieved from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7712040/
  15. Pippin MM, Madden ML. Tinea Cruris. [Updated 2020 Dec 28]. In: StatPearls. Treasure Island (FL): StatPearls Publishing; 2021 Jan-. Retrieved from: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK554602/
  16. Sidbury, R., Davis, D. M., Cohen, D. E., Cordoro, K. M., Berger, T. G., Bergman, J. N., et al. (2014). Guidelines of care for the management of atopic dermatitis: section 3. Management and treatment with phototherapy and systemic agents. Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology, 71(2), 327–349. doi: 10.1016/j.jaad.2014.03.030. Retrieved from https://www.jaad.org/article/S0190-9622(14)01264-X/fulltext
  17. Yee G, Al Aboud AM. Tinea Corporis. [Updated 2021 Jan 7]. In: StatPearls [Internet]. Treasure Island (FL): StatPearls Publishing; 2021 Jan-. Retrieved from: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK544360/

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Ringworm vs. Nummular Eczema: Symptoms to Look For

Ringworm and eczema are both skin conditions that cause dry, inflamed, and itchy skin. However, the causes and treatment options for each are very different.

Ringworm, also known as tinea, is a fungal infection that causes a ring-shaped rash with a raised, scaly border. It can occur anywhere on the body and is highly contagious. Eczema, on the other hand, is a chronic skin condition that causes dry, red patches of skin.

One type of eczema called nummular eczema is often confused with ringworm because it also causes a circular rash. Nummular eczema causes red or brown coin-shaped or oval patches over the arms, hands, legs, and torso. Nummular eczema is not contagious.

FluxFactory / Getty Images

Frequent Symptoms

Ringworm and nummular eczema can appear as very similar rashes. They both cause circular, dry, itchy patches of skin. 


Ringworm can appear anywhere on the body, but is most often found on the feet (athlete’s foot), groin area (jock itch), scalp, hands, nails, and beard. Symptoms tend to start about four to 14 days after exposure to the fungus that causes the infection. 

Common symptoms of ringworm include:

  • Ring-shaped rash
  • Itching
  • Scaly skin
  • Redness
  • Cracked skin
  • Hair loss

Ringworm commonly affects children, but it can affect people of all ages. There are known risk factors that make it more likely for certain individuals to have it. Anyone who has frequent physical contact with others, such as athletes like wrestlers, is more at risk of developing ringworm.

Other risk factors include using public showers and locker rooms, living in a tropical area, sweating heavily, living in close contact with others, sharing towels and razors with others, and having diabetes or obesity.


Nummular eczema is a chronic condition and is not contagious. The sores can heal in three to four weeks. You’re more likely to experience nummular eczema on extremely dry skin or skin that has been injured. People who have other types of eczema are also more likely to experience nummular eczema.

Common symptoms of nummular eczema include:

  • Tiny red bumps
  • Blisters
  • Red or brown (depending on your skin tone) raised rash
  • Itching
  • Scaly skin 

Rare Symptoms 


In addition to an itchy rash, ringworm can also cause hair loss. This happens when the affected patch of skin fills with pus or crusts over. Hair in the affected area then falls out. This is especially common in the scalp and beard area. 


One possible complication of eczema is a skin infection. Symptoms of a skin infection include pus, golden scab over the rash, and swelling. Because nummular eczema is so itchy, it’s natural to scratch the skin. However, this puts you at risk of developing an infection.

Home Remedies and Lifestyle

Home remedies and lifestyle changes can be very helpful in managing and even preventing a ringworm infection and flares of nummular eczema. 


Ringworm is a common infection. It requires an antifungal medication to treat it. Fortunately, there are lifestyle changes you can make right away to lower your risk of coming in contact with the fungus that causes ringworm.

The fungus that causes ringworm can live on surfaces, so it is important to avoid touching public spaces with your bare skin. For example, if you choose to shower in your gym locker room, wear flip-flops to avoid touching the shower stall.

Wash your hands frequently, especially after petting animals. Never share personal items like combs or towels. Because ringworm thrives in hot, moist environments, change your socks and underwear daily, and always change out of sweaty or damp clothing right away. 


Treatment options for nummular eczema, including home remedies and lifestyle changes, focus on relieving symptoms and preventing flares.

Daily moisturizing is considered the first line of treatment for eczema. Hydrating your skin regularly can decrease the itching and swelling associated with eczema. 

Look for moisturizers with the following ingredients:

  • Humectants work by pulling water from the dermis (the second layer of skin) to the epidermis (the top layer of skin). This process increases the level of moisture in the stratum corneum, the layer of dead cells that comprise the outermost crust of the epidermis. 
  • Occlusives like beeswax and mineral oil increase the water content of your skin by preventing water loss through evaporation. They are most effective when applied to damp skin, such as after toweling off following a shower. 
  • Emollients like lanolin and propylene glycol linoleate act as lubricants that fill in the crevices between skin cells. They can improve skin hydration and smoothness. 

Lifestyle modifications that may relieve eczema symptoms include:

  • Using a humidifier
  • Avoiding irritants like dyes, scents, and chemicals in skincare products
  • Taking short, lukewarm showers and baths
  • Wearing loose-fitted, cotton clothing
  • Avoiding very cold or very hot weather

Over-the-Counter (OTC) Medication

When home remedies and lifestyle changes are not successful in improving your symptoms, it’s time to move on to the next step. Many cases of both ringworm and eczema can be treated at home with over-the-counter (OTC) treatments.


Common forms of ringworm like athlete’s foot and jock itch can often be treated at home with over-the-counter medication. Antifungal creams, lotions, and powders are meant to be used for about two to four weeks. If you have not noticed any improvement after that time, see your primary care physician.

Common topical antifungal treatments that can be purchased without a prescription include:

  • Clotrimazole
  • Miconazole
  • Terbinafine
  • Ketoconazole 

Don’t Use Nystatin to Treat Ringworm

Nystatin should never be used to treat ringworm. It is effective for treating Candida yeast infections, but it’s not meant to treat tinea.


When moisturizing alone does not improve your eczema symptoms, the next step is trying an OTC medication. Topical corticosteroids come in the form of creams and ointments, and are used to improve itching and swelling. Most topical corticosteroids should be used twice daily.

Hydrocortisone (Cortisone-10 and Cortaid) creams and ointments are common OTC topicals used to improve symptoms of eczema. 

Get a Diagnosis Before Trying Topical Corticosteroids at Home

While topical corticosteroids are effective at treating eczema, they can actually make ringworm worse. Steroids may improve the itching and swelling, but they cannot kill the fungal infection. This may lead to the infection spreading and weakening your skin’s defenses. Using steroid cream can also cause ringworm to change its appearance. This makes it harder for your primary care doctor to diagnose it and provide the right treatment.


Many cases of ringworm and eczema can be treated with OTC medications at home. When those treatments are not effective, see your primary care doctor for a prescription.

One form of ringworm that will not respond to OTC topical treatments is scalp ringworm. This type requires a prescription oral antifungal from a physician. These medications often need to be taken for one to three months.

Common prescription antifungal medications include:

  • Griseofulvin
  • Terbinafine
  • Itraconazole 
  • Fluconazole 

Prescription options for eczema include topical steroids, topical calcineurin inhibitors, and antibiotics. Prescription steroids have a higher potency than OTC forms. Topical calcineurin inhibitors like pimecrolimus and tacrolimus help block the inflammatory response to the skin and can be used in addition to steroids.

An antibiotic may be prescribed if you have developed a skin infection from scratching. If prescription medications are not helpful, your primary care physician may recommend light therapy or wet wrap therapy. 


Ringworm and nummular eczema are commonly confused with each other because both conditions cause a circular-shaped rash and dry, itchy skin. If you are experiencing these symptoms, it’s important to see a primary care doctor for diagnosis because the two conditions require different treatment. Both can be treated with home remedies, OTC medications, and prescription medications. However, some treatments like topical corticosteroids used for eczema can make ringworm worse.

A Word From Verywell

Ringworm and nummular eczema share many of the same symptoms, so it can be difficult to tell them apart. Ringworm is a fungal infection and easily spreads between humans and animals. Eczema is a chronic inflammatory skin condition and is not contagious. 

Any change in your skin can feel embarrassing, especially when it is visible to others. Fortunately, both conditions are treatable. Ringworm can be cured with an OTC antifungal cream at home or with a prescription antifungal from your primary care doctor. While there is no cure for eczema, it can be managed with OTC topical medications and prescriptions. 

If you are unsure whether you are experiencing ringworm or eczema, see your doctor. They can tell the difference between the two conditions and will help you start healing your skin right away. 

Frequently Asked Questions 

What rashes look like ringworm? 

Ringworm appears as a ring-shaped patch of dry, scaly, red skin. Nummular eczema is a type of eczema that causes a similar rash to ringworm. It leads to coin-shaped or oval patches, which can easily be mistaken for the rash caused by ringworm. 

Do ringworm and eczema have the same symptoms?

Ringworm and nummular eczema share many of the same symptoms, such as round, scaly, itchy patches of skin. 

Can ringworm and eczema get infected?

Ringworm is a fungal infection. Eczema is not an infection, but can potentially lead to one. Chronic scratching of the skin can lead to a bacterial skin infection that requires antibiotic treatment. 

Infections and Eczema | National Eczema Society

About skin infections and eczema

Skin infections are common in people with eczema and it is likely that at some point you will experience either a bacterial, fungal or viral infection. All of these infections require intervention to clear them up as they do not improve on their own. The quicker the infection is recognised and the sooner treatment is started, the better the response to treatment. Preventing infection is also important – from simple hand washing before applying your creams to more sophisticated methods using antiseptics.

When you have eczema, the top layer of the skin (the epidermis) is often damaged. This damage is often clearly visible to the naked eye, appearing as cracks and areas opened up by scratching. There is also less protection within the skin, which you cannot see. These alterations in the barrier function of the skin increase the potential for skin infection. These infections are often described as secondary infections, which means they develop because of the underlying condition of eczema.

How can I tell if my skin is infected?

If you think your skin is infected, you should see your GP as soon as possible so that it can be assessed. Skin can be infected with bacteria, fungi or a virus. Bacterial infection is the most common.

Look out for one or more of the following signs of bacterial infection:

  • Eczema becomes suddenly worse, with redness, itching and soreness.
  • The skin is weepy with clear or yellow fluid.
  • The skin has blisters, or red/yellow pus spots appear.
  • You have a raised temperature, flu-like symptoms or swollen glands in the armpit, neck and groin.

How can I prevent infection?

  • Always wash your hands before applying topical creams.
  • Remember to decant emollients from any tubs you may be using – if you dip your fingers into a tub, it can easily become contaminated with bacteria. A metal dessert spoon is good for decanting emollient and washes well under the tap. If you are using pump handle dispensers for your emollients, you do not need to decant – you can just pump the emollient onto your hand (avoid touching the nozzle).
  • If you have eczema infected by Staph. aureus, or by fungal or viral infections, avoid sharing towels, bedding and clothing until the infection has cleared.
  • Some people with eczema suffer recurrent bacterial infections and require antibiotic treatment on several occasions. These people are often advised to use antiseptic washes or creams to reduce the amount of Staph. aureus on the skin. Commonly these antiseptics are triclosan, chlorhexidine gluconate or sodium hypochlorite. These antiseptics come combined with emollient preparations and can be used to wash with in the bath or as a leave-on preparation. One of the advantages of controlling infections with antiseptics is that they do not create or develop bacterial resistance.

For more information on skin infections and eczema, please see our Infections and eczema factsheet

Related Documents

It is Athlete’s Foot Or Eczema? – Wellness

Chronic eczema (this photo) and chronic athlete’s foot (other photo) can both exhibit scaly, blisterd skin with little redness or itching. Note how the two conditions appear almost identical. 

Chronic athlete’s foot

Eczema and athlete’s foot are two common skin conditions that nail technicians regularly see in the course of servicing clients. Telling the difference between athlete’s foot and eczema is difficult because both conditions can trigger identical symptoms. With either condition, the client may complain of symptoms ranging from thickened, scaly skin with mild redness to red, blistered, and cracked skin that may itch and burn. Even the location of the outbreak doesn’t provide many dues; Eczema is commonly found on the hands and feet; athletes foot most commonly affects the feet, but similar fungal infections can also be found on the hands.

How do you tell the conditions apart? According to Dr. Paul Kechijiam, a New York-based dermatologist and NAILS Magazine’s Nail Doctor, and Dr. Edward Young Jr., a dermatologist in Sherman Oaks. Calif, you don’t. Both doctors say they can’t differentiate the conditions positively without examining skin scrapings under a microscope and doing a culture on the affected area.

Two Different Causes

While athlete’s foot and eczema may have identical symptoms, they have very different causes. Eczema is a noninfectious, noncontagious, inflamed skin condition that is related to allergies, irritations, and emotional stress.

Athlete’s foot, on the other hand, is an infectious, contagious, inflamed skin condition that is caused by a fungal infection of the skin. Feet are prone to fungal infections because shoes and socks create a warm, damp, and dark environment that is ideal for fungi to grow.

Both conditions can be acute (appearing suddenly, sub-acute, or chronic (persistent or ongoing). In the acute stages, the skin is often blistered, cracked, and red. The skin may ooze, and most sufferers complain of burning and itching. In the chronic forms, the skin may just remain thickened and scaly, with minimal redness and itching.

The location of the symptoms sometimes provides a few clues in determining what you’re dealing with, but both doctors say they usually must do a culture to determine for certain which condition it is. Eczema usually appears elsewhere on the body, rather than just on the feet,” says Kechijian. “However, if you are allergic to a material in your shoes, then it could appear just on the foot. A clue to athlete’s foot is thick, crumbly nails. But eczema can also affect the nails.”

Young says that affected skin between the toes, especially the fourth and fifth toes, usually indicates athlete’s foot, while cracked and red skin on top of the foot or on top of the toes indicates eczema.

Know When To Say No

Most technicians know they can’t service clients with athlete’s foot because it is contagious, but many service clients with eczema. Whether the condition can be spread to other clients, however, isn’t your only concern. According to Kechijian and Young, clients with either condition should not be serviced during outbreaks.

“You don’t want to do services on people with athlete’s foot because athlete’s foot is contagious. And you don’t want to do services on clients with eczema because the skin can overreact to any mild trauma if the client has eczema,” says Young.

The skin acts as a natural protective barrier between the body and outside elements. If this barrier is broken by cracks in the skin, the individual is more susceptible to irritation and infection.

“With both athlete’s foot and eczema, the skin barrier is broken and the skin is more easily irritated. Some of the lotions and other products you use during a service will irritate the skin, even if they normally wouldn’t,” says Young.

Although either condition can recur, you can do services on clients between outbreaks. Advise clients to keep their feet cool and dry and to wear cotton socks to help keep their feet clear of either condition. For his patients who suffer from hand eczema, Kechijian recommends they wear moisturizing creams to keep the skin softened. Clients with hand eczema should also wear gloves to do housework or at any time their hands will be in contact with chemicals or other irritants.

Send Them To A Doctor

If a client has not previously been diagnosed with eczema or athlete’s foot, both Young and Kechijian recommend referring her to a dermatologist so that she gets the correct diagnosis and treatment. Otherwise says Young, she may diagnose herself and treat it in a way that cither makes the condition worse or masks its cause.

Eczema for example, is treated with topical cortisone creams: athlete’s foot is treated with topical antifungal creams. If you apply a cortisone cream to athlete’s foot, the fungal infection will worsen and spread.

Even if the client does correctly guess that she has athlete’s foot and treats it with an over the counter antifungal cream, the condition may not clear and she may end up at the dermatologist’s office anyway “There are many different antifungal medications and some clients will read belter to one than the other,” says Young.

Kechijian agrees: “Say the client uses an antifungal medicine and still the condition doesn’t clear. She goes to see the doctor and he does a scraping but can’t see fungus under the microscope because the medication killed just enough of the infection so that he can’t see it.”

While saving the time and expense of going to the doctor may have an appeal, many over the counter cortisone and antifungal treatments are not strong enough to treat eczema or athlete’s foot successfully. The skin on the palms of the hands and the soles of the feet is very thick, and it usually takes a prescription-strength preparation to penetrate the layers of skin and treat the condition.

Both Young and Kechijian advise technicians not to speculate what the condition is or what has caused it. If a client exhibits patches of thickened, scaly skin, recommend she see a physician first to determine what it is. If she already knows its eczema or athlete’s foot, explain that the products you use during the service would only irritate the condition and ask her to reschedule when the outbreak has cleared.

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Eczema, Rash, and Skin Allergies

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  • Acne
  • Age Spots, Sun Spots, and Sun Damage
  • Aging Skin, Fine Lines, and Wrinkles
  • Cysts, Boils, Sores, Lumps, and Blisters
  • Discoloration and Uneven Skin Tone
  • Eczema, Rash, and Skin Allergies
  • Folliculitis, Razor Bumps, and Unwanted Hair
  • Hair Loss
  • Loss of Volume in Skin
  • Melasma
  • Moles, Lesions, Skin Tags, and Warts
  • Nail Problems
  • Psoriasis and Vitiligo
  • Rosacea
  • Scars
  • Short, Thin Eyelashes
  • Skin Cancer
  • Spider, Facial, and Leg Veins
  • Stretch Marks
  • Torn Earlobe
  • Unwanted Fat
  • Unwanted Tattoos
  • Varicose Veins

Your skin is the largest organ of your body and when it is healthy, the skin provides a barrier between the inside of the body and the outside of the environment. There are many different kinds of rashes the skin can develop. The most common rashes seen are non-infectious and allergy related rashes. Some of these include:

  • Seborrheic Dermatitis
  • Eczema or Atopic Dermatitis
  • Contact Dermatitis

Infectious rashes or scaly patches may appear when bacteria or fungus infects the skin. Fungal infections such as ringworm or yeast can cause red scaly patches that may closely resemble eczema, which is not a fungal infection. Fungal infections are typically treated with antifungal creams or in some cases, such as when the toenails are involved, with an oral prescription. Bacterial infections usually require treatment with oral antibiotics or prescription strength creams. The most common bacterial infection of the skin is impetigo, which is caused by staph or strep germs.

If you have a skin condition that is causing a rash, irritation or scaly patches that itch and may be infected, call Gardner Dermatology & Med Spa to schedule an appointment. We usually have same week appointments available for your convenience.

Disclaimer: Individual results may vary from patient to patient and there is no guarantee of specific results.

90,000 Fungus attack: How to recognize a skin attack? | Health

“Conditionally pathogenic fungi live on the skin of all people. If a person has good immunity, then they do not cause disease, – says

Viktoriya RUKAVISHNIKOVA, doctor-mycologist, candidate of medical sciences. – But if the body malfunctions, the fungus can become active and then it becomes infectious. In addition, you can pick up foreign pathogenic fungi, which are bound to cause disease. “

Without amateur performance

Redness and itching of the skin are characteristic of many dermatological diseases. It can be atopic dermatitis, eczema, and fungus. The latter develops primarily on the palms, soles of the feet, folds of the body, scalp, nails. Can move to nearby areas. There are yeast-like fungi that affect the mucous membranes, skin of the hands, and nails. “Therefore, do not try to determine the cause of their appearance yourself, even a doctor cannot always make a diagnosis without conducting research,” warns Viktoria Rukavishnikova.

Typical manifestations of the fungus – peeling in the form of plates, rings; the grooves of the skin may look like they are dusted with flour. Sometimes bubbles appear, which can fester and burst. If the nails are affected, they can change color, thicken, and collapse.

Catching someone else’s fungus is most likely in a bathhouse, swimming pool, if you wore someone else’s linen or shoes, did not use your own towel. Moisture and flakes of skin, which are present in all of the above cases, are ideal conditions for the fungus to get to a new host.The source can also be an animal with the same disease.

Wash the bathroom !

The fungus must be treated, and the sooner, the less effort, time and money you will spend on it. It is impossible to choose the necessary medications (ointments, preparations for oral administration, etc.) by yourself, since you must first understand what to be treated for. Therefore, you cannot do without a doctor. The timing of treatment also depends on where the fungus appeared and how serious the disease is, while it is necessary to complete the course so that it does not appear again.

During treatment, it is very important to reduce the risk of infection of loved ones. It is enough to just wash the dishes, but the bathroom must be disinfected every time (with household chlorine-containing agents or a solution of “Samarovka”). Rugs, towels for the feet of a patient with a fungus should be individual.

Parents need to be especially careful – many children like to get into bed with mothers and fathers, and if they have a fungus, the child can become infected.

Double Vigilance

Another disease that belongs to fungal diseases is pityriasis versicolor .Despite the unpleasant name, the disease is not very contagious. But up to 15% of the population is affected by it. Recent research has ranked pityriasis versicolor as a possible cause of dandruff and thinning hair.

Symptoms of the disease – scaly spots of indeterminate shape of different shades (brown, pink, dark). They most often appear in people with sweating, oily skin. The interscapular region on the back, the middle of the chest, the head is mainly affected, from there it can go to the whole body.

Lichen can pass by itself, but then it will periodically appear again.Therefore, it is also better to treat it under the supervision of a specialist.



How not to infect loved ones

Generally, when a person is being treated, the likelihood of transmission is low. In addition, the following measures help to make the non-infectious fungus:

  • skin lubrication with 2% iodine solution. The pharmacy sells 5% iodine, so it must be diluted with water so as not to burn the skin.Regular iodine can be applied to the nails;
  • If it is inconvenient to use iodine in the morning, you can also take sulfur salicylic ointment or any antifungal cream;
  • clothes, towels, bed linen during treatment must be steamed with an iron;
  • Shoes should be disinfected with “samarovka” or 1% chlorhexidine bigluconate (gibitan), 40% acetic acid.

What is eczema and how to deal with it


1.Rodionov A.N., Zaslavsky D.V., Sydikov A.A. Eczematous (spongiotic) dermatoses. Illustrated guide for doctors // St. Petersburg State Pediatric Medical University, 2018 .– 200 p.

2. Small Medical Encyclopedia in 6 volumes edited by V.I. Pokrovsky, publishing house “Soviet Encyclopedia”, 1991 // t. 6, p. 541.

3. Symptom of pruritus in the practice of the first contact doctor, Consilium medicum journal, 2015.http://con-med.ru/magazines/physician/physician-03-2015/simptom_kozhnogo_zuda_v_praktike_vracha_pervogo_kontakta/

4. Instructions for medical use of the drug FeniVate Cream P N012556 / 01 from 15.07.2009. Instructions for the medical use of the drug FeniVate Ointment P N012556 / 02 dated 16.07.2009.

5. According to the results of the study, after applying the drug Feniveit ointment for 4 weeks in 35 out of 39 patients with eczema, doctors assessed the reduction of skin manifestations as “good”, “excellent”, “clear skin” in comparison with the baseline.Delescluse J, van der Endt JD. A comparison of the safety, tolerability, and efficacy of fluticasone propionate ointment, 0.005%, and betamethasone-17,21-dipropionate ointment, 0.05%, in the treatment of eczema. Cutis 1996; 57: 32-38.

6. FeniVate is the only preparation in the form of an ointment / cream based on fluticasone propionate, registered in the Russian Federation according to the State Radiation Control System for August 2020.

15. Kovalev D.V., Mokronosova M.A., Prokofieva T.I., Sharapov S.V. et al.Attack on allergies // Series “Do not hurt!”, IJ “Health”, pp. 67–68.

16. Rodionov A.N., Zaslavsky D.V., Sydikov A.A. Eczematous (spongiotic) dermatoses. Illustrated guide for doctors // St. Petersburg State Pediatric Medical University, 2018 .– 200 p.

21. Andrienko N.I. How to moisturize the skin in winter with pharmaceutical products and why it is important. // “New pharmacy”, No. 2, 2020, p. 136-144.


1.Katsamabas A.D., Lottie T.M. European guidelines for treatment in dermatology. 2014, LLC “MEDpress-inform”, 3rd ed., Trans. from English, 736 p.

2. Instructions for the medical use of FeniVate Cream RU P N012556 / 01 from 15.07.2009 and FeniVate Ointment RU P N012556 / 02 from 16.07.2009.

3. Revyakina V.A., Taganov A.V., Kuvshinova E.D., Larkova I.A., Mukhortykh V.A. Atopic dermatitis, a modern therapy strategy. // Therapist. No. 05/19 https: //www.lvrach.ru / 2019/05/15437289/

4. Revyakina V.A.,. Atopic dermatitis: features of differential diagnosis in children // Attending physician. No. 07/2006 https://www.lvrach.ru/2006/07/4534198/

5. Rodionov A.N., Zaslavsky D.V., Sydikov A.A. Eczematous (spongiotic) dermatoses. Illustrated guide for doctors // St. Petersburg State Pediatric Medical University, 2018 .– 200 p.

6. The symptom of pruritus in the practice of the doctor of the first contact, the journal Consilium medicum, 2015.http://con-med.ru/magazines/physician/physician-03-2015/simptom_kozhnogo_zuda_v_praktike_vracha_pervogo_kontakta/

7. Instructions for medical use of the drug FeniVate Cream P N012556 / 01 from 15.07.2009. Instructions for the medical use of the drug FeniVate Ointment P N012556 / 02 dated 16.07.2009.

8. Kovalev D.V., Mokronosova M.A., Prokofieva T.I., Sharapov S.V. et al. Attack on allergies // Series “Do not hurt!”, IJ “Health”, 2003, pp. 69–70.

9.Small Medical Encyclopedia in 6 volumes, edited by V.I. Pokrovsky, publishing house “Soviet Encyclopedia”, 1991 // t. 5, p. 328.

10. Kovalev D.V., Mokronosova M.A., Prokofieva T.I., Sharapov S.V. et al. Attack on allergies // Series “Do not hurt!”, IJ “Health”, 2003, pp. 93–94.

11. Stepanova E.V. Allergic contact dermatitis: basic approaches to diagnosis, treatment and prevention // Attending physician No. 10 2009 / https://www.lvrach.ru/2009/10/10860462/

12.Federal clinical guidelines for the management of patients with atopic dermatitis: Clinical guidelines. Russian Society of Dermatovenereologists and Cosmetologists. – Moscow, 2015.

*. New, sales start in July 2020

**. Federal clinical guidelines for the management of patients with eczema: Clinical guidelines. Russian Society of Dermatovenereologists and Cosmetologists. – Moscow, 2013

90,000 How to live with eczema?

Eczema and dermatitis.What is it?

Eczema and atopic dermatitis are two names for the same disease. To be precise, eczema is understood as a whole group of inflammatory skin diseases associated with its increased reactivity. In other words, there is an allergy behind eczema.

In modern society, dermatitis affects about 10-12% of the population of developed countries. 1 Usually the first manifestation of the disease is in infancy. With age, it can completely disappear or become chronic, when periods of exacerbation are replaced by phases of remission.

A hereditary factor has a great influence on the risk of developing the disease. If one or both parents have allergies or dermatitis, the child is more likely to experience similar problems. Very often, dermatitis is associated with food allergies, pollen allergies and bronchial asthma. A variety of stimuli can provoke eczema 2 , for example:

  • components of cosmetics,
  • some fabrics,
  • latex,
  • household chemicals,
  • cat or dog hair,
  • perfume,
  • food preservatives and colorings,
  • metals (especially nickel),
  • cigarette smoke,
  • some medicines (neomycin 3 , bacitracin 4 ),
  • formaldehyde in disinfectants or glue,
  • isothiazolinone 5 – antibacterial agent, it can be impregnated with sanitary napkins.

Atopic dermatitis or eczema is not contagious and cannot be transmitted from person to person. 6

The main symptoms of dermatitis are redness, severe itching and dry skin (Fig. 1). Inflammatory lesions are most often concentrated on the face, neck, arms and legs, especially on the ankles and wrists, on the elbows and under the knees. A rash that has appeared on the head, under the hair, often causes a lot of discomfort, it is more difficult to cope with it. Sometimes with dermatitis, the skin does not dry, but, on the contrary, becomes covered with weeping rashes.

Itching tends to be of greatest concern in sufferers. It causes painful wounds and scratching, which only exacerbates the condition of already sensitive skin.

Figure 1. Symptoms of atopic dermatitis. Illustration: MedPortal

The presence of dermatitis can also be said:

  • appearance of rough, flaky areas and cracks on the skin,
  • increased swelling,
  • urticaria – especially after exposure to an allergen, after exercise or taking a hot bath,
  • new skin folds on the palms and under the eyes,
  • eyebrow or eyelash loss,
  • 90,073 blisters or papules with liquid content.

Depending on the causes and nature of the manifestations, contact and seborrheic dermatitis are distinguished. The first one is exacerbated after meeting with an allergen, while the foci of inflammation usually arise at the site of contact. Seborrheic dermatitis, in turn, is associated with excessive activity of the sebaceous glands and the predominance of yeast-like fungi of the species Malassezia in the skin microflora. In this case, it is the fungus that causes the allergy, and redness and rashes on the skin are most noticeable where there is more fungus – in places where the sebaceous glands accumulate.First of all, the forehead, the skin on the nose and around the nose, under the hair, on the back and chest are affected.

Important! Eczema should be diagnosed by a specialist. Self-medication is a thankless task, the wrong choice of therapy can significantly worsen the patient’s condition.

Eczema and Anxiety

Anxiety levels are known to increase in people suffering from dermatitis. 7 This is not surprising. It is difficult to stay calm and happy if you are haunted by the constant itching and soreness of the skin, which often interferes with sleep.In fact, stress and eczema form a kind of vicious circle: stress provokes inflammation, and exacerbation of eczema increases stress.

Unfortunately, many mental problems in these patients remain undiagnosed. And there are many problems. This is depression, and low self-esteem, and the development of neurotic disorders (Fig. 2).

Figure 2. How dermatitis affects our lives. Image: MedPortal

How to get rid of dermatitis?

It is impossible to completely cure atopic dermatitis, but it is possible to reduce the severity of its symptoms or even achieve a stable remission.The three steps to healthy skin are cleansing, hydration and medication. Patients with eczema may be prescribed:

  • topical steroids,
  • steroid injections,
  • immunosuppressants that suppress the body’s immune responses,
  • antihistamines,
  • antibiotics for infections,
  • phototherapy – UV treatment.

At the same time, topical steroids – ointments, creams and gels – remain the most widely used remedy for eczema and the “gold standard” of treatment. 8

In 2019, 55% of eczema patients were actively using topical corticosteroids. 9

What is the secret of their popularity? The thing is that glucocorticosteroids in the composition of such creams act directly on the cells of the epidermis, providing an anti-inflammatory effect on the damaged areas of the skin. Being synthetic analogs of human steroid hormones, they attach to cell receptors and trigger a whole cascade of chemical transformations in cells.Thanks to corticosteroids, the production of inflammatory mediators responsible for pain and swelling is reduced in the tissue. In addition, corticosteroids (fluticasone propionate, betamethasone dipropionate, clobetasol propionate, etc.) contribute to the narrowing of capillaries and reduce allergic and immune reactions, due to which the skin of atopics is so sensitive. 10

A great advantage of the latest generation of topical steroids such as fluticasone propionate 11 is their safety profile.They tend to be cleared more quickly and have less effect on the body’s immune and hormonal systems than first-generation corticosteroids.

Important! Many topical steroids are sold without a prescription, but specialist advice is required prior to using them. Drugs in this group have contraindications, and their prolonged, uncontrolled use can lead to thinning of the skin, acne, addiction and other side effects. 12

Who needs topical corticosteroids

Topical corticosteroids are the second step in the treatment of eczema, which is used if the disease worsens even after following all the usual recommendations of specialists.Sometimes patients regularly moisturize their skin, take warm baths and avoid any contact with irritants, but still suffer from itching, redness and pain.

In this case, topical steroids are a great way to relieve inflammation and overcome symptoms where other drugs are powerless. Correctly selected cream can quickly relieve the condition, playing the role of “first aid”, allow the skin to recover and accelerate healing.

Important! Before using a cream containing glucocorticosteroids, be sure to read the instructions.Different creams may be used differently. As a rule, the cream is recommended to be used after taking a bath, applied to the affected areas in the direction of hair growth. Thighs and wrinkled areas may need a little more cream than other areas. 13 A moisturizer can be applied over the steroid cream.

What should be a new generation cream

When choosing a cream based on corticosteroids, you should pay attention to its composition. The latest generation of corticosteroids, such as fluticasone propionate 11 , are potent with a low risk of cutaneous and systemic side effects.In addition, the cream should have caring properties (Fig. 3) and be comfortable: it should be absorbed quickly, not leave a film, and not have a strong odor. If the disease causes severe dryness of the skin, it is better to choose an ointment, and in the case of weeping rashes, light creamy textures are suitable.

Figure 3. What qualities a cream based on glucocorticosteroids should have. Illustration: MedPortal

One of the examples of a modern remedy against dermatitis is the novelty FeniVate – a drug of the latest generation with a pronounced anti-inflammatory effect in the form of an ointment and cream. 14-16

FeniVate is created using a special micronization technology, which promotes better penetration of the active active substance into the epidermis. The drug works at the cellular level, has a targeted effect on the focus of inflammation and helps not only cope with the symptoms of allergic dermatitis, but also suppress the inflammatory reaction on the skin. 14

Why is it so important to overcome steroid phobia

Topical steroids help quickly relieve eczema symptoms and control disease progression.However, many patients refuse to resort to them for fear of facing side effects from taking hormonal drugs. Today, experts call steroid phobia one of the main reasons for the development of complications of atopic dermatitis: pustular skin lesions, inflammation of the eyelids and conjunctivitis. 17

Don’t let fear affect your quality of life. Local steroids have a moderate effect on systemic processes in the body. 12 And in order to reduce the risk of undesirable side effects to a minimum, you should regularly visit a specialist and adjust therapy in time if it becomes ineffective or causes discomfort.

How to live with dermatitis

Atopic dermatitis in adults can become chronic, and then you have to fight it all your life. There is no cure for eczema, but the good news is that illness can be kept in check by keeping symptoms to a minimum. This requires 18 :

  • to know and exclude contact with triggers that provoke inflammation,
  • Take good care of your skin,
  • Use medications prescribed by a specialist.

It is very important to individually select the type and form of the drug so that the therapy is effective and comfortable for the patient. This also applies to topical steroid drugs. In addition, you need to constantly monitor the development of the disease and is under the supervision of a specialist. Long-term remission can be a reason for gradual withdrawal of drugs or for switching to low doses of the drug. If symptoms worsen, a specialist will help you adjust your treatment plan by choosing a new therapy.

Unfortunately, eczema is sometimes unpredictable. It can flare up suddenly, and it is sometimes difficult to understand why she returned. The reason for its manifestation can be stress, excitement, climate change or the quality of tap water. When living with eczema, you always need to be on the lookout. But even if the disease makes itself felt at the most inopportune moment, you should not take it as a disaster. Since our emotional state is closely related to the manifestations of eczema, you can defeat the disease only by accepting your skin as it is.There is no need to hide dermatitis, it needs to be treated, and then the skin will surely reciprocate the love shown.

How to avoid exacerbation of dermatitis in winter

In winter, exacerbation of dermatitis is common. Even healthy skin can find it difficult to cope with temperature extremes and dry indoor air. To get rid of the symptoms of the disease even in the frosty months will help:

  • cold compresses,
  • Warm baths with oatmeal or baking soda,
  • Body creams or ointments with a high concentration of oils in the composition (apply the cream immediately after a bath or shower).

In winter, it is especially important to try not to irritate the skin, do not rub it with a towel, avoid scratches, do not use perfumed cosmetics (Fig. 4). Always wear gloves when cleaning and glasses when using aerosol cleaners. In clothing, preference should be given to soft, natural fabrics, such as cotton. Thus, in the cold season, the daily routine should be even more gentle than usual.

Figure 4. How to care for skin with eczema in winter.Illustration: MedPortal


Eczema is rarely completely cured unless it goes away on its own. Nevertheless, a careful attitude to the skin, the absence of contact with irritants and medications help to fight it. Today, corticosteroid-based creams are the most common treatment for the symptoms of atopic dermatitis. 9 They help to quickly relieve inflammation and itching during exacerbations and significantly prolong the period of remission.

Trademark owned or used by GSK.GlaxoSmithKline Healthcare JSC. Russian Federation, 123112, Moscow, Presnenskaya nab., 10, room III, room 9, floor 6. Tel. +7 (495) 777-9850. PM-RU-FENIV-20-00071.


  1. National Center for Health Statistics, National Health Interview Survey, 2014.
  2. National Eczema Association website. Eczema causes and triggers.
  3. Thomas N. Helm and all. What is the role of neomycin in the etiology of allergic contact dermatitis? Medscape. -2020
  4. Susana Vilaça and all.Simultaneous contact allergy to neomycin, bacitracin, polymyxin, and dexamethasone: An often unrecognized cause of allergic contact dermatitis in patients using topical antibiotics. Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology. -2012, -V. 6, -I. 4, -S. 1, -P. AB74. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jaad.2011.11.316
  5. A.C. de Groot, A. Herxheimer. Isothiazolinone preservative: cause of a continuing epidemic of cosmetic dermatitis. Lancet. -1989. DOI: 10.1016 / s0140-6736 (89) -4
  6. Atopic Dermatitis 101 for Adults.National eczema association. -2017
  7. J.I. Silverberg and all. Symptoms and diagnosis of anxiety and depression in atopic dermatitis in U.S. adults. British Journal of Dermatology. -2019. https://doi.org/10.1111/bjd.17683
  8. A. Wollenberg and all. Consensus-based European guidelines for treatment of atopic eczema (atopic dermatitis) in adults and children: part I. J. Eur. Acad. Dermatol. Venereol. -2018. Doi: 10.1111 / jdv.14891
  9. John Elflein. Global use of prescription topical treatments and phototherapy for eczema 2019.-2020
  10. C. Fookes. Topical Steroids. Drugs.com. -2018
  11. A. Roeder and all. Safety and efficacy of fluticasone propionate in the topical treatment of skin diseases. Skin Pharmacol. Physiol. -2005. DOI: 10.1159 / 000081680
  12. NHS. Topical corticosteroids
  13. Give Topical Steroids the Fingertip. National eczema association
  14. Instructions for the medical use of FeniVate cream RU P N012556 / 01 from 15.07.2009 and FeniVate ointment RU P N012556 / 02 from 16.07.2009.
  15. New, sales start June 2020
  16. Katsambas A.D., Lotti T.M. European guidelines for treatment in dermatology. 2014, LLC “MEDpress-inform”, 3rd edition, trans. from English, 736 p.
  17. Ellie Choi and all. Efficacy of targeted education in reducing topical steroid phobia: A randomized clinical trial. Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology. -2020. -V. 83, -I. 6. -P. 1681-1687. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jaad.2020.02.079
  18. NIAID.Eczema (Atopic Dermatitis) Treatment

Eczema: what is it, symptoms, causes, types, treatment and diet

Table of Contents

Eczema is a chronic inflammatory skin disease of an allergic nature. The causes of the onset and development of pathology have not yet been studied, but it is believed that the provoking factors are allergic diseases and genetic prerequisites. Treatment for eczema is successful today.You just need to contact experienced specialists.

What is eczema?

This is a disease characterized by inflammatory processes and is characterized by:

  • A large number of provoking factors of development
  • Many types of rashes
  • A tendency to relapse
  • Highly resistant to treatment

Usually, eczema rashes concentrate on areas such as:

  • Neck
  • Knee Bends
  • Elbows
  • Ankle

Symptoms of pathology may periodically increase.Such attacks last from a couple of hours to several days.


In accordance with the characteristics of the course of the pathological condition, there are:

  • Acute eczema. Her symptoms usually persist for 1 to 2 months
  • Subacute . The symptoms of this pathology are less pronounced. In this case, the pathology can accompany the patient up to 6 months
  • Chronic. In this case, the disease can continue for several years.Relapse periods are followed by remissions

There are several types of pathology:

  • True . This eczema is characterized by a chronic course. Exacerbations occur frequently and are accompanied by the appearance of symmetrical foci of inflammation. First, areas of the skin become red and swollen. After that, small bubbles form on them. Over time, they open up with the release of exudate (a small amount of liquid)
  • Microbial .This form of pathology is characterized by the formation of deep ulcers and fistulas. Pathology is accompanied by severe itching. In the microbial form, the foci of inflammation spread mainly to the legs
  • Seborrheic . This form is characterized by rashes on the face (on the forehead, near the eyebrows, behind the ears) and scalp. Complete restoration of the skin is possible only with correct therapy
  • Children . This form is characterized by a large amount of exudate
  • Professional .This form of pathology is characterized by striking manifestations. The rash can appear on various areas of the skin (usually those in contact with irritants). Irritants for occupational eczema can be chemical, physical, or mechanical. Usually pathology is provoked by constant exposure to cosmetics, active chemicals, various plants, resins, metals (mainly nickel and chromium)


Eczema, which should only be treated by professionals, is common.

Its reasons include a number of internal and external factors.

Internal factors for the development of eczema:

  • Disorders of the nervous system
  • Pathology of internal organs
  • Genetic factors (heredity)

External factors provoking pathology:

  • Temperature increase or decrease
  • Exposure to aggressive chemicals
  • Influence of extracts of various plants, etc.

Often, the pathology is provoked by a combination of internal and external factors.

Eczema can be the body’s response to:

  • Pollen contact
  • Excessive sweating
  • Immune system disorders
  • Stress
  • Taking medications
  • Taking certain products

Before starting treatment for eczema, it is very important to identify the causes that triggered the onset of the pathology.Only in this case, the therapy will be as effective as possible and will not drag on for a long time.


All types of eczema are characterized by the following symptoms:

  • Occurrence of separate inflamed areas on the skin
  • Onset of rash
  • Itching
  • Bubble Opening
  • Wounds and cracks that cause permanent discomfort
  • Increased body temperature during exacerbations
  • General malaise and weakness
  • Cracking of the skin, its pronounced dryness and loss of elasticity

Symptoms of the pathological condition largely depend on the stage of development of eczema.

At erythematous stage , the disease manifests itself as inflamed areas. Gradually, the spots can merge into a separate affected area, characterized by an impressive area.

At papular stage , the affected skin becomes unpleasant to the touch. Small nodules with clear boundaries and bright red color are formed on it.

At vesicular stage , the nodules turn into vesicles.

At the stage of soaking , the bubbles gradually open up, and liquid is released from them.

At crusty stage , the inflamed areas dry out. Yellowish crusts form on the skin.

At stage dry eczema , the skin begins to peel off. The formed crusts gradually disappear. You shouldn’t try to rip them off yourself! This can provoke a resumption of pathology.


Treatment of eczema in adults is possible only after a careful assessment of its symptoms and causes.That is why it is very important for a doctor to conduct a high-quality diagnosis.

It begins with the collection of anamnesis.

The doctor finds out:

  • The first cases of manifestation of signs of a pathological process
  • Presence of intolerance to certain products and drugs
  • Cases of allergic reactions

At the first appointment, the dermatologist performs dermatoscopy. This study is aimed at studying the condition of the skin, mucous membranes and scalp.

Then laboratory tests are carried out.

To diagnose eczema, the following are prescribed:

  • Urinalysis
  • Blood tests
  • Study of the level of immunoglobulin in blood serum

During the examination, the specialist determines the general state of health of the patient, assesses individual vital signs. If necessary, a consultation with a nutritionist and immunologist-allergist is carried out.

In advanced situations, a comprehensive immunological and allergological examination with sampling is also prescribed. As part of such a diagnosis, doctors are able to identify irritating factors that can provoke symptoms of eczema and allow them to quickly begin treatment of the pathology.


The main task of the doctor after making a diagnosis such as eczema is to reduce or completely eliminate the factors that provoke the onset of symptoms.

Treatment of pathology is conventionally divided into several stages:

  • Taking general medications
  • Diet correction
  • Use of local remedies in the form of ointments, emulsions, creams, etc.
  • Physiotherapy

The following groups of drugs are used for therapy:

  • Antihistamines . Such funds are prescribed for acute eczema
  • Glucocorticosteroids .These hormonal preparations relieve inflammation and prevent the development of allergic reactions
  • Diuretics . Such funds are recommended for severe edema
  • Tranquilizers . These drugs allow you to eliminate itching, ensure a sound and healthy sleep for the patient, his full rest, even with severe discomfort in the acute stage of eczema
  • Enterosorbents . These funds allow you to quickly remove all products of intoxication from the intestines
  • Vitamins of group B , aimed at normalizing the functioning of the nervous system
  • Antibiotics .These funds are prescribed if, as a result of diagnostics, it turned out that eczema was provoked by the action of aggressive microorganisms

Locally, applications with pastes and ointments are usually prescribed, which have:

  • Antipruritic effect
  • Anti-inflammatory action
  • Antiseptic properties

Formulations of preparations for external use are often selected individually.In some cases, “talkers” are prescribed, which are prepared in pharmacies with a doctor’s prescription.

Important! It is strictly forbidden to use folk remedies, various oils, plant extracts, etc. for the treatment of eczema. They are able not to suspend the development of the pathological process, but to provoke it.

With regard to physiotherapy, patients are usually prescribed:

  • UV irradiation
  • Magnetotherapy
  • Electrophoresis

Treatment of weeping eczema is carried out with the obligatory use of drugs that allow you to dry the skin and ensure the elimination of external signs of pathology.The therapy of other forms of the disease has an individual specificity. Your doctor will tell you about all the intricacies.

There are general guidelines that should be followed by all patients suffering from the disease.

  • Avoid skin contact with substances that cause exacerbations (if such substances are determined by tests and samples)
  • Compliance with the diet. Cocoa, citrus fruits and chocolate should be completely excluded from the diet
  • Skin care only with products recommended by a doctor
  • Elimination of nervous overload and stressful situations


A well-chosen diet is often the basis for the recovery of patients with eczema.When choosing the products you need, the doctor takes into account both the general state of health and the stage and form of pathology, as well as the presence of concomitant diseases.

There are general recommendations regarding nutrition.

All patients during an exacerbation should:

  • Exclude spicy, salty and smoked foods
  • Refuse sweets
  • Remove citrus fruits, eggs, alcoholic beverages, dairy products and convenience foods from the diet

The diet must include:

  • Greens
  • Lean porridge
  • Vegetables

During periods of remission, it is advisable to use zucchini and pumpkin, watermelons, gooseberries, lingonberries, currants and cranberries, nuts.Patients who adhere to a strict diet usually improve rapidly. After a month, the diet can be expanded.

With eczema, the following foods and drinks are strictly prohibited:

  • Coffee and cocoa
  • Sweets
  • Fatty meat
  • Tomatoes
  • Garlic
  • Buns and other muffins
  • Melon
  • Grenades
  • Beet
  • Strawberry
  • Honey

It is advisable to consume only those foods that are hypoallergenic.Your doctor will give you a complete list.

Benefits of treatment at MEDSI

  • Complex diagnostics of eczema . The examination includes laboratory tests, dermatoscopy and video dermoscopy. Diagnostics is carried out on modern equipment. We have our own laboratory, which allows us to provide patients with the results of analyzes in CITO mode (urgent)
  • Individual selection of treatment methods for eczema in adults and children.Therapy is prescribed taking into account the stage of the pathological process and the characteristics of its course
  • The use of modern drugs at . Patients are prescribed anti-inflammatory, disinfectant and other agents that have been developed recently, but already have proven efficacy
  • Carrying out modern physiotherapy procedures . Our clinics offer UVA therapy, ozone therapy, magnetotherapy. The combination of modern techniques allows you to achieve pronounced treatment results in the shortest possible time
  • Treatment of eczema with laser systems .Our clinic has the Excilite µ system. It belongs to the latest generation of excimer lasers. The procedures are painless and do not cause discomfort in patients. In this case, the treatment of signs of eczema with such a system takes a minimum of time

To make an appointment with a doctor, just call +7 (495) 7-800-500. Reception is possible at a convenient time for you in a comfortable environment.

7 types of eczema – causes, symptoms, treatment

Eczema usually manifests itself in the fact that areas of a person’s skin begin to become inflamed, itchy and redden.There are several different types of eczema, including atopic and discoid eczema and contact dermatitis.

World statistics indicate that the prevalence of eczema is about 1-2% among the adult population of the planet. The disease affects all races and age categories, women and men. It has been found that women suffer from eczema more often than men. In 70% of cases, eczema is the reason for going to the doctor, in 20% – the cause of temporary disability, in 10% of cases – the reason for changing jobs or professions.

In general, eczema can affect the skin, causing:

  • dark spots;
  • rough scaly or leathery patches;
  • 90,073 swelling;

    90,073 peel and wet.

Eczema is not contagious, which means that a person cannot get it himself and / or infect another person.

This article examines seven different types of eczema, their causes and symptoms. The article also discusses methods of diagnosis, treatment and prevention of the disease.

1. Atopic dermatitis

Atopic dermatitis, or atopic eczema, is the most common type of eczema.

Often onset in childhood and can range from mild to severe. A child often develops atopic dermatitis if one of the parents has had it.

Children with atopic dermatitis are at high risk for food sensitivities. Also, these children are prone to diseases such as asthma and hay fever.In some children, atopic dermatitis can go away with age.

Atopic dermatitis tends to present with patches of dry skin that can become itchy, red, and inflamed. These areas often appear in the folds of the elbows and knees, as well as on the face, neck, and wrists. Scratching these areas can worsen itching and cause clear fluid to ooze out of the skin. Repeated scratching or constant friction can cause the skin layer to thicken. This condition is known as Lichen Simplex Chronicus (LSC).

People with atopic dermatitis usually experience flare-ups for a time in which the eczema worsens. The reasons for the manifestations of such outbreaks can be:

  • low humidity, cold weather and extreme temperature changes;
  • Certain irritants such as detergents, soaps, perfumes and fragrances;
  • dust mites;
  • 90,073 animal hair and saliva;

    90,073 skin infections;

  • Certain fabrics such as wool and synthetics
  • hormonal changes, eg during pregnancy;
  • food allergies.

2. Contact dermatitis

In some people, a skin reaction is caused by contact with certain substances. This condition is known as contact dermatitis.

Symptoms of contact dermatitis may include:

  • dry, red and itchy skin, the person feels like the skin is on fire;
  • 90,073 bubbles;

    90,073 rash that looks like small red bumps

A person with atopic dermatitis is at increased risk of developing contact dermatitis.

There are two types of contact dermatitis:

Irritant contact dermatitis

Irritant contact dermatitis can result from repeated exposure to a substance that irritates the skin, for example:

  • acids and alkalis;
  • fabric softeners;
  • strong detergents;
  • 90,073 solvents;

  • hair dyes;
  • weed control chemicals
  • cement:
  • some shampoos.

People who regularly use or work with such substances have a higher risk of developing contact dermatitis.

Allergic contact dermatitis

Allergic contact dermatitis occurs when a person’s immune system reacts to a specific substance known as an allergen.

A person may not react to an allergen at the first contact with it. However, once they develop an allergy, it remains for life.

Potential allergens include:

  • adhesives and adhesives:
  • latex and rubber:
  • Certain medications such as topical and oral antibiotics;
  • 90,073 fabrics and dyes for clothing;

    90,073 some plants;

  • Ingredients in make-up, nail polish, creams, hair dyes and other cosmetics;
  • some metals such as nickel and cobalt.

3. Dyshidrotic eczema

Dyshidrotic eczema usually occurs in adults under the age of 40.It usually manifests itself on the hands and feet and has characteristic symptoms, including severe itching and the appearance of small blisters filled with fluid (vesicles). In some cases, the blisters may become large and watery. The vesicles can also become infected, which can lead to pain and swelling. They may also ooze pus.

The bubbles usually burst within a few weeks. After this, the skin often becomes dry and eroded, which can lead to painful skin cracks.

It is unclear what causes dyshidrotic eczema. However, the disease is more common in humans:

90,072 90,073 suffering from hay fever;

  • with atopic dermatitis or atopic dermatitis has a family history;
  • 90,073 with fungal skin infections.

    People who work with certain chemicals or work with their hands immersed in water during the day are also at greater risk of developing dyshidrotic eczema.

    Emotional stress and changes in the weather are among the factors contributing to the development of dyshidrotic eczema.

    Dyshidrotic eczema can be a form of contact dermatitis. People with dyshidrotic eczema also tend to experience flare-ups from time to time.

    4. Discoid eczema

    Discoid eczema or nummular eczema, recognizable by the disc-like patches of itchy, red, cracked and swollen skin it causes.

    Disks usually appear on the lower limbs, trunk and forearms.Sometimes the center of the disc is clear, surrounded by a ring of red skin.

    Discoid eczema can occur in people of any age, including children.

    As with other types of eczema, the causes of discoid eczema are not entirely clear. However, known causes and risk factors include:

    • dry skin;
    • 90,073 trauma to the skin such as friction or burns;

      90,073 insect bites;

      90,073 poor blood flow;

    • cold climate;
    • 90,073 bacterial skin infections;

    • some medicines;
    • Sensitivity to metals and formaldehyde;
    • atopic dermatitis.

    5. Seborrheic dermatitis

    Seborrheic dermatitis is a condition that causes a red, itchy and scaly rash. The rash may appear swollen or raised, and may develop a yellowish or white crust on its surface.

    Seborrheic dermatitis develops in areas with oily skin, for example:

    • Skull Skin;
    • 90,073 ears;

      90,073 eyebrows;

      90,073 eyelids;

      90,073 face;

      90,073 upper chest and back;

      90,073 armpits;

      90,073 genitals.

    Seborrheic dermatitis can affect people of any age. For example, a type of seborrheic dermatitis may develop on the scalp of babies, but this usually disappears after a few months.

    There is no cure for seborrheic dermatitis in adults, so the person will periodically experience outbreaks of the disease. This course of the disease is typical for people aged 30 to 60 years.

    Certain medical conditions and medical conditions can increase the risk of seborrheic dermatitis.These include:

    • Parkinson’s disease;
    • 90,073 HIV;

      90,073 acne, rosacea and psoriasis;

      90,073 epilepsy;

      90,073 Alcohol Use Disorders;

    • recovery from a stroke or heart attack;
    • depression;
    • 90,073 eating disorders.

    Certain medications, including interferon, lithium, and psoralen, may also increase your risk of seborrheic dermatitis.

    6.Varicose eczema

    Varicose eczema is also known as venous, gravitational or static eczema. It is common in older people with varicose veins.

    Aging, decreased motor activity can weaken the veins in a person’s legs. This condition can lead to both varicose veins and varicose eczema.

    Varicose eczema usually affects the lower legs, symptoms may include:

    • Itchy spots or blisters;
    • dry, scaly seals;
    • 90,073 oozing, hard stains;

    • cracked leather.

    The skin on the leg can become fragile, so it is important to avoid scratching and scratching spots and blisters.

    7. Asteatous eczema

    Asteatous eczema, also called xerotic or craquelure eczema, usually only affects people over the age of 60. The disease may be due to the fact that as a person ages, his skin becomes drier.

    Asteatous eczema usually occurs on the lower extremities, but it can also appear on other parts of the body.Symptoms include:

    • Cracked, dry skin with a characteristic appearance;
    • pink or red cracks or depressions;
    • 90,073 itching and soreness.

    As with other types of eczema, the causes of asteatous eczema are unknown, but the causes of its manifestations can be:

    • dry, cold weather:
    • hot baths:
    • soap and other detergents:
    • excessive cleaning of the skin;
    • towel drying.

    When to see a doctor and diagnostics

    People who develop eczema should see a dermatologist. Eczema can indicate an allergy, so it is important to determine what is causing the reaction. Eczema also increases the likelihood of infection with staphylococci and has a serious impact on a person’s mental health. Your doctor may recommend a treatment plan for outbreaks.

    There is no specific test for diagnosing most types of eczema.The doctor may need information about the patient’s personal and family medical history. He may also inquire about recent exposure to potential allergens and irritants. It is important that patients inform their doctor if they have hay fever or asthma.

    The doctor can also ask the patient about:

    • the nature of the sleep period;
    • 90,073 Stress Factors:

      90,073 any previous skin treatments;

    • any steroid use.

    A physical examination of the rash will help the doctor determine the type of eczema.

    A doctor may also perform a test that involves tingling a person’s skin with a needle that contains potential irritants and allergens. Such a test can determine if a patient has contact dermatitis.


    There is no cure for eczema, so treatment includes managing symptoms and trying to prevent further manifestations of the disease.

    Some treatment options for eczema include:

    • Applying moisturizers or emollients to the skin to reduce itching and cracking;
    • Using steroid creams and ointments to reduce swelling, redness and soreness;
    • use of antihistamines to relieve itching, especially at night;
    • use of calcineurin inhibitors to help reduce inflammation;
    • phototherapy, which uses ultraviolet light to fight inflammation
    • The use of antibiotics for the treatment of bacterial skin infections.

    Prevention of disease manifestations.

    A list of tips that can help prevent flare-ups of eczema include:

    • Use of mild soaps and detergents;
    • the need to avoid aromatic fragrances or perfumes;
    • use of cool water for showers and baths;
    • Gentle drying and skin care after washing;
    • The need to avoid scratching or rubbing areas of eczema, as damage to the skin can worsen and increase the likelihood of infection;
    • Thorough and regular moisturizing of the skin using light, oil-rich products;
    • Application of non-cosmetic moisturizers after showers and baths to maintain skin moisture
    • Wearing clothes made from natural fabrics, refusing tight clothes.

    Patients with eczema should be in constant contact with a dermatologist to determine what is causing or worsening the symptoms of the disease. Knowing the causes of eczema or allergens can help prevent or minimize the manifestations of the disease.

    Original article on Medical News Today – What are the different types of eczema?

    The Professors’ Clinic is attended by qualified dermatologists who will help patients in the treatment of skin diseases.You can clarify information, make an appointment with a specialist by calling a single telephone number in Perm -206-07-67 or using the “Appointment” service on our website.

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