- Atopic dermatitis is a type of chronic eczematous skin disease.
- The disease may be inherited and genetically determined.
- The patient’s skin may be “super sensitive” to many irritants.
- Dry, scaly patches develop in a characteristic distribution.
- Itching varies but may be intense and scratching hard to resist.
- Scratching can cause skin thickening and darkening and lead to further complications, including bacterial infection.
- Extremely dry skin can break down and ooze or weep.
- If the itch can be controlled, the rash (which is aggravated by vigorous scratching) may be more readily treated.