Atopic Dermatitis


Key Points

  • Atopic dermatitis is a chronic, intermittent disease. It is most prevalent in children but affects all ages.
  • Atopic dermatitis is commonly found in association with allergic rhinitis, asthma, or other manifestations of atopy.
  • There are three likely related pathophysiologic mechanisms underlying the disease: skin inflammation (T helper cell dysregulation), an epidermal barrier defect (ceramide, filaggrin) and genetics.
  • Treatment involves an initial therapy to reduce inflammation as well as a long-term maintenance regimen. Skin care is critical to the initial treatment and to the maintenance plan.
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