Eczema & Urticaria
Eczema (Atopic Dermatitis) is a chronic inflammatory skin problem causing itchiness, scratching and scabbing, and dry scaly skin. It may be local patches or widespread. Atopic Dermatitis tends to occur in people who have personal or family histories of allergy or asthma (atopy), and is most common in children. Early changes in the skin can progress to thickening with lines (lichenification – like moss on a tree), skin color changes, oozing and scarring, and increased risk of skin infection.
Eczema appears early, within the first 6-12 months of life, affecting cheeks, trunk, elbows and knees. Later, the pattern changes to neck and the folds of elbows and knees.
Sometimes only hands and/or feet are involved. Triggers of Atopic Dermatitis include:
- Allergens – food, airborne (dust mites, mold, animal dander)
- Climate – cold, dry weather, sweating in summer
While allergy is not the only trigger, it is readily testable, and treatment by avoidance can lead to dramatic improvement. Typical management includes moisturizing and a combination of oral and topical medications. Allergy and Asthma Associates of North Jersey PA can help to diagnose and customize treatment for this problem.
Urticaria (hives) and angioedema (swelling) are surprisingly common problems, affecting 20-25% of people at some point in their lives. Raised welts, itching, and swelling are the main symptoms. Urticaria is described as acute (lasting less than 6 weeks) or chronic (more than 6 weeks) and may be daily, intermittent, or sporadic.
Allergy is commonly implicated in acute urticaria, with foods, drugs, or stings the cause. Infections, especially viral, are also common triggers. Chronic urticaria triggers are less clear. Physical factors, like pressure, heat/sweating, cold, sun and exercise are known causes. Chronic infection, autoimmune diseases, hormonal imbalances and cancers may also present as hives before other symptoms. The most common diagnosis is Idiopathic (or unknown). History, particularly of recent changes or exposures in the patient’s life, plays a key role in diagnosis. Skin testing and bloodwork can also provide clues or rule out suspicions. Chronic urticaria without a medical condition as a cause often resolves over time, but may take years. Management requires use of antihistamines and/or anti-inflammatory medications.
Why Choose Us?
- Treating Allergies and Asthma in All Ages
- Dr. Weinreb is Double Board Certified
- Customized Treatment Plans
- Highly Trained Office Staff
- Minimally Invasive Techniques Offered
- State of the Art Facilities (two offices)
- Committed to Continuing Education
- Evening Appointments Available
- Emergency Same-Day Appointments Available