Eczema

Eczema Specialist
Patients who have eczema struggle with itching and redness that disrupts their lives. Although this skin condition is considered incurable, effective treatment helps alleviate the symptoms. Dr. Audrey Bruell is a Board Certified dermatologist who offers eczema treatment at Audrey Bruell, MD to patients in Livonia, Michigan, and the surrounding area.

Eczema Q & A

by Audrey Bruell, M.D.

What’s eczema?

Eczema, which may also be called “atopic dermatitis,” is a common skin condition that causes patches of red, itchy skin to develop. This condition is usually chronic, but symptoms come and go. In many cases, people with eczema also experience hay fever and asthma.

What causes eczema?

The exact cause of eczema is unknown. However, researchers believe that many different factors contribute to eczema, including problems with the immune system, genetic issues, environmental conditions, and dry skin. Certain bacteria also influences the development of eczema symptoms.

What are the symptoms of eczema?

The symptoms of eczema vary, but may include:

  • Thickened, scaly skin
  • Small bumps that leak fluid
  • Patches of red to brownish skin
  • Itching

These symptoms are most common on the knees, elbows, upper chest, hands, and feet. Babies may also develop eczema on the scalp and face.

How does Dr. Bruell diagnose eczema?

Dr. Bruell diagnoses eczema based on the patient’s symptoms and an examination of the patient’s skin. No lab tests are required to diagnose this condition.

What treatments are available?

Researchers haven’t found a cure for eczema, but treatment helps alleviate the symptoms. Some of the treatments Dr. Bruell may prescribe for eczema include:

  • Oral medications to control itching and inflammation
  • Creams to reduce itching and repair the skin
  • Wet dressings
  • Light therapy

What can patients do to control symptoms at home?

Certain factors may aggravate the symptoms of eczema. Avoiding these factors improves patients’ symptoms. Some of the factors include:

  • Sweating
  • Stress
  • Dry skin
  • Pollen or dust
  • Certain soaps, cleaners, solvents, or detergents
  • Scratching eczema lesions


To reduce the intensity of symptoms, patients should avoid situations that lead to extreme sweating. They also should take shorter baths or showers with mild soap. In addition, patients should moisturize their skin twice per day to prevent dryness.

What are the possible complications of eczema?

If eczema isn’t treated properly, patients may experience complications, including skin infections, sleep disturbances, and low quality of life. For children, eczema may also lead to behavioral problems.

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