An Informative Guide To Papular Eczema

Papular eczema is the fourth most expensive skin disease to treat in the United States.  It is estimated that Americans alone spend almost three billion dollars every year in attempt to treat this irritating condition.

This disease is characterized by a rash and an itch that can occur on someone of any age and can have a serious sociological and psychological impact.  Between 70 and 90 percent of papular eczema occurs before the age of five with the higher percentage being in girls over boys.  The actual pathogenesis of this skin disease is still being researched.  It is known though that the primary causes are reported to be heredity of genes, skin barrier disorders, environmental interactions and immunological reactions.

Diagnostic Features

The diagnosis of papular eczema involves a physical screening and answering of a series of medical history questions.  There are not any laboratory tests done.  Clinical features play the major role in a comprehensive prognosis.

The first step to making a proper diagnosis is to rule out other possible skin diseases like seborrheic dermatitis, contact dermatitis, cutaneous lymphoma, etc.  The diagnosis is based completely on the physical features associated with the disease.

As a rule, to make a proper diagnosis it needs to be based on three stages of the disease including infantile, childhood and adult.  Each age period of the condition is then diagnosed as being either acute, sub-acute or chronic.  Then it is divided into either intrinsic or extrinsic groups with intrinsic being the non-allergic kind associated with dry skin at a young age and extrinsic being hereditary resulting in respiratory allergies.

Approximately 80 percent of infants diagnosed with papular eczema develop either asthma or allergic rhinitis later in childhood and in 40 percent it occurs later in life.

General Symptoms Of Papular Eczema

Infantile Symptoms

Papular eczema in infants makes up the largest percentage of affected people and is generally identified by acute skin inflammations.  If the infant is too young to be crawling, the lesions occur primarily on body parts that are in contact with bedding.  After the infant is crawling, the knees are usually affected first.

Childhood Symptoms

When the child is between 2 and 12 years old the lesions are milder and usually occur on the inner elbow, back of the knee, back of the neck and the hands.  Children of darker colored skin commonly often suffer from loss of pigmentation on their face.

Adult Symptoms

An adult with papular eczema may have chronic inflammation and scale that increases greatly with age primarily in creases of skin on the neck, head, eyelid and the hand.  The hand is the most common occurring location.


It is easier to prevent papular eczema than it is to treat it by reducing allergens that can trigger symptoms.  Standard treatment comes from skin hydration creams and topical corticosteroids.  Antihistamines and antibiotics are often prescribed and stress management plays an important part of therapy.  Your personal physician will be able to determine what the most efficient treatment is for you or they may refer you to a skin specialist or dermatologist.

Long-term Disadvantages

This skin disease can also bring a large number of complications including edema, infection, ocular cataracts, steroid rosacea, osteoporosis and growth retardation.  There can also be syndromes that are associated with an intolerance of topical treatments and drugs that are generally used to treat papular eczema.




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