Atopic eczema (often called atopic dermatitis) is one of a group of related, inherited conditions that also includes asthma and hay fever. It can make the skin dry, itchy, red, broken and sore. It sometimes makes the skin darker or lighter for a while. People of all ages can get atopic eczema, but it usually starts in early childhood. It usually improves with age, but some people will have the condition into adulthood.

  • 1 in 5 children develop eczema. It is the commonest childhood skin disorder.
  • Eczema can affect any part of body but will usually affect face in young infants.
  • In older children atopic eczema affects skin behind knees and front of elbows.

Eczema can have periods of exacerbation and remission, but generally it is a chronic condition. Many infants will grow out of it as they grow older.

In infants, various food allergens can cause exacerbation of eczema. Milk is a common allergen which can cause exacerbation of eczema. Other trigger factors are soaps, detergents, shampoos, infections, inhalant allergens, exposure to animals etc.

Not all children with atopic eczema require investigations but those with the severe form of the disease require investigations to determine the nature of the allergen triggering eczema.


Treatment involves avoiding the triggering factors. Topical emollient creams, steroid creams and newer generation of creams called calcineurin inhibitors.

Breast feeding

Breast feeding may have some protective effect against all allergic conditions like eczema.It may reduce the severity of allergies and eczema.


If your child has or may have symptoms of eczema and you would like to make a private appointment to find out more, please contact me