Atopic dermatitis is a hereditary, chronic, allergic, non-infectious (non-contagious) disease presented with erythematous-lichenoid rash and itching. Atopic dermatitis is due to a genetic predisposition (atopy) to allergic skin reactions.

Pathogenetically, a key role in the atopic dermatitis is played by functional immunodeficiency, with nervous system and psycho-emotional disturbances having a secondary effect.

The disease is spread throughout the world, in people of different age, women are more susceptible to it. Recently, the incidence of atopic dermatitis has considerably increased. It is associated with food, environmental contamination, and psycho-emotional overload.

            Infections (bacterial, viral, fungal), allergens (alimentary, household, industrial) and psycho-emotional overload can exacerbate the disease. Atopic dermatitis can also result from unfavorable meteorological factors, such as lack of sunlight, sharp temperature or humidity changes, etc.

Being hereditary, the disease is, unfortunately, characterized by exacerbations, but the periods of remission (rash free) can be prolonged.

Recently, the incidence of atopic dermatitis in one family member is more common. If one of parents or close relatives present with atopic dermatitis, bronchial asthma or allergic sinusitis, a child will probably develop the disease in 50%. If both parents suffer from atopic dermatitis, the probability is 80%.

In 90% of cases, the diagnosis of atopic dermatitis is made within the first five years of life. 60% of patients develop the disease during the first year. As a child grows up, the symptoms of atopic dermatitis can subside or sometimes resolve, but most patients present lifelong manifestations of the disease. Besides, the progression of atopic dermatitis is often accompanied by an allergic reaction and /or bronchial asthma.

Though the atopic dermatitis is a chronic disease, it can be controlled using special means and medications. The therapy can stop the recurrent rash and control the itching. The treatment of atopic dermatitis includes hypoallergenic diet, correction of gastrointestinal disorders (enzyme therapy, elimination of dysbacteriosis, etc), sanitation of foci of chronic infection (carious teeth, chronic tonsillitis, etc). Antihistamines, sedatives (valerian, motherwort, etc, vitamin A, E) are usually administered. Topical therapy depends on the type of rash. In most cases, glucocorticosteroid creams and ointments and moisturizers are used.

The prevention of atopic dermatitis includes dietary recommendations, treatment of concomitant diseases, rational mode of work and rest, dispensary observation, and rational professional orientation of the patients.

Doctor-dermatovenerologist                                                               V.I.Roslik