Atopic dermatitis

Atopic dermatitis

What is it?
Atopic dermatitis is an inflammatory condition of the skin characterized by intense itching and associated often with asthma and/or allergic rhino-conjunctivitis.

What does it look like?
Atopic dermatitis causes acute and chronic eczematous lesions that may overlap depending on the stage of the condition. It is characterized by dryness of the skin, due to an alteration in the skin’s barrier function, redness and intense itching. Atopic dermatitis runs a chronic relapsing course associated with periods of remission followed by more or less intense flare-ups.

  • In newborns under the age of 12 months, acute lesions are common: erythema, oedema, blisters, erosions, and crusts. Commonly affected areas: face, extensor surfaces of the limbs.
  • In children between the age of 1 and 10 years, subacute lesions are common: crusting and lichenification. Commonly affected areas: flexural areas, wrists, back of the hands, eyelids.
  • In teenagers, chronic lesions are common: hyperkeratosis, lichenification, and fissures. Commonly affected ares: neck, flexural areas, palmar-plantar regions, periorbital area, and perioral area.

What causes it?
Atopic dermatitis is caused by a complex interplay between environmental, genetic, and immunological factors.

  • The alteration in the skins barrier function causes the loss of water and the dryness of the skin. Besides, it allows for the penetration of allergens and microorganisms that can further worsen the inflammation.
  • An excessive itching in response to various stimuli, related to the increase in the number of nerve fibers that carry the itching sensation.
  • Exacerbated immune response to various stimuli characterized by the release of inflammatory substances (cytokines). This induces and intensifies the itching sensation and the phlogistic processes that cause redness and cutaneous hypersensitivity.

How can it be treated?
There are no drugs that can cure this condition. The medications are used to alleviate or eliminate the symptoms (itching, rashes) and reduce the flare-up episodes during the year. The thermal hydrotherapy available in Comano is a natural therapeutic treatment safer than pharmacological treatments, without contraindications, and with long-lasting effects.