Eastside Medical Associates

Amy Lichtenfeld, MD

Board Certified Allergist-Immunologist & Internist located in Manhattan, New York, NY

Eczema is a common skin disease, especially among people who live in cities. Upper East Side, New York City allergist-immunologist and internal medicine physician Dr. Amy Lichtenfeld, provides eczema treatment for teenagers all the way through to older adults at Eastside Medical Associates. To find relief from itchy, red skin caused by eczema, call or book an appointment online today.

Eczema Q & A

What is eczema?

Eczema is a term that describes many different skin problems, but atopic dermatitis is the most common type. Atopic dermatitis is a condition that causes your skin to become red and itchy. Scratching it often makes the affected skin swell and crack, which may cause fluid to seep through and form a crust.

Atopic dermatitis is a chronic — long-lasting — condition that tends to flare up periodically. Although there’s no cure for atopic dermatitis, Dr. Lichtenfeld can help you manage the symptoms and prevent future outbreaks.

Contact dermatitis is another form of eczema. Unlike atopic dermatitis, contact dermatitis isn’t a chronic skin disease. Contact dermatitis is a red, itchy rash that appears after you touch a skin irritant or something you’re allergic to. Poison ivy and latex are common sources of allergic contact dermatitis.

What are the symptoms of eczema?

Eczema symptoms vary from person to person, but often include:

  • Dry skin
  • Itching that may be severe
  • Red or brown patches on your skin
  • Thickened, cracked, or scaly skin
  • Raised bumps that may seep clear fluid
  • Swollen skin from scratching

Atopic dermatitis most often appears on the face, hands, feet, or inside the knees and elbows.

Who gets eczema?

Eczema is most commonly diagnosed in babies and children, but you can get it at any age. People who live in cities and dry climates may be more susceptible to getting this disease.

Other factors that increase your risk of getting eczema include having a personal or family history of eczema, allergies, hay fever, or asthma.

How do you diagnose and treat eczema?

First, Dr. Lichtenfeld performs a thorough exam and reviews your medical history. She can diagnose the type of eczema you have by examining your skin and asking questions about your symptoms.

If you have contact dermatitis, Dr. Lichtenfeld may perform allergy testing to determine the cause of your rashes. She performs a skin test to check for food or environmental allergens and a patch test to check for chemical allergens.

Then, she develops a personalized treatment plan that best suits your needs. For atopic dermatitis, she discusses treatment options to manage your symptoms and prevent future flare-ups. This may include:

  • Creams that control itching
  • Anti-inflammatory medicines
  • Lifestyle changes to keep your skin hydrated
  • Biologic agents such as DUPIXENT®

If you think you have eczema, call Dr. Amy Lichtenfeld or book an appointment online.