Atopic dermatitis in Adult
In infants, the disease involves primarily the face, scalp, torso, and extensor aspects of extremities. In children and adults, the disease usually involves chiefly the flexural aspects of extremities, but it may be more generalized. In adults, flexural skin may be clear and disease may be focal or widespread. Follicular patterns of atopic dermatitis (ie, follicular eczema) are more common in persons with darker skin phototypes.
Atopic dermatitis may be categorized as follows:
- Acute – erythema, vesicles, bullae, weeping, crusting
- Subacute – scaly plaques, papules, round erosions, crusts
- Chronic eczema – lichenification, scaling, hyper- and hypopigmentation
Intense pruritus (itching) is a hallmark of atopic dermatitis. Scratching leads to lichenification (skin thickening). Impaired barrier function leads to increased water loss and cutaneous infections. Patients with atopic dermatitis are prone to impetiginization with Staphylococcus aureus. Secondary infections with herpes simplex virus (eczema herpeticum), Coxsackie viruses (eczema coxsackium), or vaccinia virus (eczema vaccinatum) may transpire.
For more information, see OMIM.
L20.9 – Atopic dermatitis, unspecified
24079001 – Atopic dermatitis
- Allergic contact dermatitis
- Irritant contact dermatitis
- Nummular dermatitis (nummular eczema)
- Eczema craquelé
- Tinea corporis
- Pityriasis rosea
- Seborrheic dermatitis
- Lichen simplex chronicus
- Ichthyosis vulgaris
- Pityriasis rubra pilaris
- Secondary syphilis
- Glucagonoma syndrome
- Mycosis fungoides – If an adult patient has persistent "eczema" that is not adequately responding to therapy, this entity should be ruled out with skin biopsies.
Last Updated: 10/05/2018