Eczema

Question:

What treatment has been effective for your eczema? Submit Your Comment

Comment from: Patrick, 55-64 Male (Patient) Published: August 09

It was a nightmare existence. It was routine for me to wake up each night to apply all the different creams and moisturizers to ease the itch from eczema. I then hit on the fact that people do get peanut allergies and I was happily munching on packets of different nuts almost daily. So, I stopped eating all kinds of nuts. It took another 2 weeks to see the results as my body cleansed itself if any nut residue. And it really works and I have not used any cream or moisturizers for almost a month now.

Comment from: Ed1964, 45-54 Male (Patient) Published: July 06

Only one product has ever helped my eczema; Blue Lagoon from Iceland (it must the Icelandic stuff, there are lots of other Blue Lagoons, but only this one is any good), their various products, all mineral. It's like a miracle. If you can't get it (and it is online), then try keeping your eczema dry, that's what it needs, not moisturizing, but keeping dry. Keep it out of water if you can. Water feeds the fungal yeast. It will turn to dust in a week or so. Try it, it works!

Comment from: sonya, 55-64 Female (Patient) Published: June 25

I had eczema when I was a child which took forever to heal. Recently I wore a tight sleeve in hot weather and I developed this eczema in my mid arm. It could've been due to my type of clothing, or my sweat, or how my blouse was washed, humidity, heat, etc. Anyway, since I didn't have any medicines, I used my husband's leftover Gold Bond foot powder and to my surprise my eczema subsided, dried up, and I think I am on my way to recovery.

Comment from: 0-2 Male (Caregiver) Published: June 27

Having never suffered nosebleeds until last summer (2013), naturally my first gusher was daunting. Like many of you, I did most things incorrectly (tilting back head choking on fast flowing blood pouring down my throat; not pinching nose or applying ice on bridge...). Finally, after daily nosebleeds--most occurring at night--awakening me from sound sleeps-- I visited an ENT physician last summer. The ENT showed me where/how to pinch my nose during nosebleeds, after which I was to BLOW OUT the extremely deep red, coagulated blood clots accumulated during pinching (very gross & frightening looking) into tissue until flow cessation. Once the bleed stopped, I was to take half a cotton ball, saturate it with Afrin, and pack it into my nose for at least 15 minutes. This contracts the vessel. This year's nosebleeds began three weeks ago for which I used the 'pinch and blow' method to stop the flow, followed by packing a saturated cotton ball in my nostril. However, I prefer witch hazel with aloe as it's homeopathic and works just as well as Afrin but without the dryness--a nosebleed's cardinal enemy.

Comment from: Nina, 25-34 Female (Patient) Published: March 25

I've had eczema most of my life. It started when I was a child during the summers, and now I am in my early 30s. It's much worse in the winters, but heavy moisturizers do help. I've been told that the cause stemmed from anything as simple as laundry soap to other things like heredity and even being allergic to my own sweat! Since I've started treatment as an adult, I've had oral steroids, which work wonders while you're actually taking them, topical creams, and even methotrexate (chemotherapy). While the steroids worked great to clear my legs and hands up for my wedding, once you stop them, the disease is back with a horrid retaliation. Currently, I'm using PUVA light treatments and they seem to work famously. The scarring hasn't subsided, but the rash, itching and oozing are gone. I go twice a week for two minutes each (literally) and everything clears up. I can usually do the light treatments for two to three weeks and then be free of any rash for a couple of months. The only bad thing is that the treatment is costly (about $90 each time) and most insurance companies don't cover it. Though most can't afford it, if you can do it once in a while, it's definitely beneficial.

Comment from: bruce, 65-74 Male (Caregiver) Published: February 17

I had a mild form of eczema on my leg that was getting worse. I started drinking aloe vera juice every day. It went in 3 days. I bought it from Holland and Barrett. Try it, you can't lose.

Published: September 10

My eczema began a year ago. It started with a rash around both eyes that were unbearably itchy and developed into what I guess would be one of the extreme forms of this condition. Every morning I would wake up with my eyes crusted shut, and sores that built up around my cheeks that would ooze all day. I consulted a dermatologist and my two primary care doctors, but all of the lotions, ointments and pills that they prescribed me didn't help. It came to a point where I actually became clinically depressed for a while and refused to step out of the house with my face looking as it did. At this point, patches also developed around my elbows. Things only started to turn for me when I combined the advice of my family. I started to use Cocoa Butter lotion generously. I also visited a Chinese herbal doctor at the urging of my grandmother. It was something that I was skeptical about but at that point I was desperate enough to try anything. The herbal tea that they brewed for me was absolutely vile, but it really did help to clear my skin. About a month after I kept this routine up, my cheeks were no longer oozing and the area around my eyes was clear. Today, my cheeks are still flare up with little red bumps and I have quite a bit of dryness and flaking. I'm currently using Locoid Lipocream to control the last traces of redness and irritation. I also make sure I moisturize well everyday and it's working really well in smoothing out my skin.

Comment from: MDM, 65-74 Female (Patient) Published: September 14

I just developed Dishydrotic Eczema last year at age 67 on my hands after using a new pair of gloves at the gym when I use hand weights. I developed severe dry skin that no cream could help at all. I had some outbreak of a red itchy rash followed by dry, cracking skin. A cortisone cream brought relief from the rash. Over the winter, it was not much of an issue but came back in the spring and summer. Stress is a factor as I had flare-ups while getting ready for trips (we had several trips to take over a 3 month period). Surprisingly, one of our trips was on a scuba diving trip to the Bahamas and my hands improved within 2 days so that I no longer had to use gloves while showering. I plan to bring back jugs of seawater with me. I've tried to duplicate that by using Masada Dead Sea Salts but my initial try dried my hands out too much. It is now September and my hands are much better so I am going to try it again. My big problem is delicate skin that cracks easily and is very dry. I can sleep with a thick coating of a petroleum-jelly product and within minutes of getting up my hands are drying out again. One product I have had luck with is "Udderly Smooth" Udder Cream made for cows that I found at the drug store. To summarize, for me it is 1) seasonal 2) associated with stress 3) saltwater cleared it up immediately.

Comment from: mickysfrnd, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: September 10

I am having a terrible time with my hands and feet. The itching from my eczema is unbearable. The soles of my feet have numerous cracks as if someone has taken a razor blade to them. The palms of my hands are peeling and cracking as well. Also, the tips of my ring fingers are cracking. The dermatologist gave me some ointment and urea cream. It seems to comfort the affected areas but not treat them.

Comment from: Tansa, 35-44 Female (Patient) Published: January 07

I have suffered chronic eczema for over 30 years and tried anything and everything on the market. Needless to say nothing worked only gave slight relief to the constant burning and itchy skin. After I turned 40 my skin started to get a lot worse, I went to allergy specialists which were a waste of time. It wasn't until I was referred to a naturopath that focused on food intolerances and advised me to have a blood test.. The test came back that I was intolerant to dairy, gluten, corn and eggs. I had to eliminate these foods for 6 months and then slowly introduce them again. I did not start to see any improvement in my skin until after around 5 months. After one month of following this diet my skin started to really flare up but they did warn me that it could get worse before it gets better. It has now been 8 months and my skin is like baby skin. I have my life and sanity back. Anyone that suffers chronic eczema knows how debilitating it can be. To anyone out there suffering there is a cure what I have learned is that you must work from the inside first and there are triggers you just need to find what food it is and also focus on gut health.

Comment from: Camilla, 25-34 Female (Patient) Published: November 20

I have had eczema for most of my life. I am 26 and I started using Eucerin lotion, and Cetpahil.

Comment from: Tom, 55-64 Male (Patient) Published: August 14

I have eczema patches on my legs. Steroids have only made the areas smoother but the redness has remained. Visits to specialists several years ago ended with a verdict of "Blame your mum, it's hereditary." Recently, I developed a patch on my forehead. With the sunny weather upon us I was using sunscreen. I was pleased to find that it didn't just avoid sunburn but the red patch disappeared. I decided to try it twice a day on my leg patches. It's only been a week but they seem to be fading.

Comment from: Stormie, 75 or over Female (Patient) Published: April 30

The most effective help I have found (on suggestion of my Dr.) is to NOT use soap, but to use DOVE for bathing. It has proven to be very effective for me. The problem has 'gone away' within the first week of stopping the use of SOAP.

Comment from: Ictchy In Seattle, 25-34 Female (Patient) Published: December 13

I have had eczema my entire life. I am 29 years old now and it seems to be getting worse. It is spreading to new spots on my body and the scaling and redness is much worse. I have found that cutting out Gluten and Dairy has helped.

Comment from: Liz, 65-74 Female (Patient) Published: April 04

I have discoid eczema which starts as small red spots then becomes big red wheals and after 24hours becomes a bigger area partly red but mostly a black bruise. Steroid creams do not seem to help but moisture creams do. I'm usually so itchy and hot that I cannot sleep.

Comment from: red bird, 65-74 Female (Patient) Published: March 21

As an adult I developed eczema on my left lower leg above the ankle. It turned out I am allergic to soy. I kept it under almost complete control by totally avoiding soy until I moved to be near family. Soy is virtually impossible to avoid when eating out, and I now enjoy eating out with family fairly regularly. I am putting up with the red and somewhat itchy eczema (always occurring in that one lower outside leg area). Life is too short and since I live in Minnesota where it is cold half the year. The eczema area is usually covered up. I'm just letting people know common foods such as soy CAN be the source (no doubt in my case)!

Comment from: Sarah, 25-34 Female (Patient) Published: January 07

I have suffered Eczema ever since I was a young child. I was given orange juice by my mum when I was very young and the first sign was a rash on my bottom. I am now 28 and only within the last 2 years I have suffered terribly. I usually suffer worse in the winter and a little in the spring when all the pollens are out. I itch very intensely. Affected areas are the shoulders, back, chest, neck, behind the elbows, wrists, arms, between the fingers, hands, and sometimes behind the knees and the legs. I have also had itchiness of the eyes and on the forehead. Cortisone creams have helped. I have also taken oral cortisone tablets that have worked wonders short-term. I was lucky. I booked a holiday to India. After just a day or two of my skin exposure to those conditions my skin completely cleared up. I didn't need to apply creams I felt completely cured. I felt like I had a new layer of skin. I felt so smooth no pain or itchiness!! Even the red hot curries, rice, and all kinds of foods there had no harmful affect on my skin or the polluted air of New Delhi!!!! I ended up having a holiday of a life time!!!!!!!

Comment from: D1977, 25-34 Male (Patient) Published: October 11

I've been researching so many different things online. One of my close friends recommended infrared therapy. He has one in his living room, I've used it about 15 times so far and the symptoms have really subsided. He gave me the information where he purchased it, I think I may need to buy one of my own.

Comment from: Nzales, 65-74 Female (Patient) Published: September 13

My rash started with just a small red spot about the size of a dime on my forearm. The itching became worse and rash began to spread and turn more red. The itching became unbearable and was waking me up at night. I tried every home remady I could find. The only thing that helped was putting a hot hair dryer on it. I finally went to doctor and he did a biopsy. Eczema! Used a cream called econazole nitrate and it finally begin to fade and itch much less. This lasted six weeks. The only thing I can think of is that I would pick up my dog with this arm and could be an allergic reaction.

Comment from: Hopeful mom, 7-12 Female (Caregiver) Published: July 06

My two young daughters have eczema. My older one has it the worst. I used to take the doctor's advice for moisturizer and steroid cream treatment. Then I realized from doing my research in terms of diet intake and ingredients in most of the lotion may heighten the eczema flare up. Increasing fruits and vegetables and daily fluid intake will definitely help. High heat cooking of any food should be avoided. Best is steam approach the food. Beef and shellfish could be the culprit, too especially for food allergy. Anyway, each case could be very different from others.

Comment from: jmmv, 25-34 Female (Patient) Published: June 24

I was diagnosed with eczema when I was about 20. I was at college and had seen the medical center for the rash that wouldn't go away. When I went home, mom scheduled an appointment with our family doctor to verify, and both said it made sense - I had dealt with "heat rash" since I was little in my arm, elbow, and knee pits. I've since learned that a little powder in those areas helps, and my breakouts seem to stay fairly centralized on the palms of my hands. They will generally start between my ring fingers and the middle and pinkies, regardless of whether I am wearing jewelry or not. A good hand-washing and making sure I keep moist but dry (as in lotioned, but not wet) will tend to keep things in check, but occasionally - as I'm in the Army - that's not always feasible. I always have a small tube of Triamcinalone available, and usually within 2 or 3 days of application, it'll go away again. There have been two or three memorable breakouts since I was diagnosed - the most painful on my palms. I woke up one morning, and they were both red, you could see the little blisters under the surface of the skin. It hurt to hold or touch anything, and a few blisters in the crevices between the fingers had surfaced so it had the "wet" look going for it too. I was in Iraq at the time, so the dust and the high dry temperatures didn't help a whole lot, but after a slightly stronger ointment and a week's time, all better again.

Comment from: rumarjay, 13-18 Male (Caregiver) Published: May 25

Our son has had eczema since he was two years old. We've tried several topical treatments and have seen several dermatologists. We realized stress would cause his eczema to flare up. He now has only a small area (quarter in diameter) on his ankle. We bought an aloe vera plant which we would cut a piece off and rub directly on the eczema spot. This has really helped him. Hope it helps someone else.

Comment from: Lyly, 25-34 Female (Patient) Published: April 13

I've been suffering from eczema for almost four years now. It started from my hands and damaged my nails, and suspiciously, I already have scalp eczema. I have already consulted three dermatologists already. I just decided to stop my medication until the last doctor said that this is chronic and runs with the family. I have a brother with hand eczema. The doctor also told me that the ointment provides only temporary relief and that the symptoms will keep coming back. Stress is also another factor. Now, I'm letting the skin peel off and cleanse itself because I'm pretty tired of buying creams and they're pretty expensive. I'm still searching for long term relief to treat this problem permanently.

Comment from: cb, 45-54 Female (Caregiver) Published: March 08

I am a woman of 48 years and was diagnosed with hypertension and my primary started me on medications. I gained 70lbs and my face, hands, feet broke out and the ointments, antihistamines didn't work so she sent me to a dermatologist who then sent me to an allergist who didn't find anything wrong. I've been tested for lupus twice use. My face feels like leather and one day spoke with a doctor friend who asked about my hypertension meds he informed me of ace inhibitors causing people with eczema or psoriasis to flare up. I called my primary stopped the meds and now I have some relief, but I Still don't feel cute because of all the damage that's been done. Always check the side effects of your medication first.

Comment from: mel3, 7-12 Female (Caregiver) Published: February 19

My husband and children got eczema, however my youngest daughter who is 9, has it worse than any of the others. She gets it behind her knees and in the bends of her arms. She mostly gets it in the winter months. The creams the doctors gave her did not work for her at all. We didn't know what else to do. A family member suggested we use A&D ointment, the kind you use to treat diaper rash and it really worked. So instead of lotions, we just grab a few boxes of A&D. I have to rub her legs and arms down with the ointment before bed and before school. It takes the itching, the redness and dryness away. She is in complete comfort using A&D over the creams that were prescribed.

Comment from: bniyyoung, 65-74 Female Published: January 26

I am a woman in my sixties and it is interesting that the condition you describe as eczema happened to me as a child on my hands and feet. I had no idea what it was but it began at age ten and grew worse in our cold snowy NY winters. It returned every year for 10 years. It then disappeared. You can imagine my dismay when it returned at age 30. It was less intense but lasted 10 years once again. At age 50 only small traces returned on my hands only and disappeared completely after a few months. Doctors seem to know nothing about it and topical treatments were used but nothing helped. Summer was the only thing that brought relief.

Comment from: allgirl41, 35-44 Female (Patient) Published: November 30

I only started suffering from eczema as an adult about 4 years ago. It started with a rash on the back of my knees. I didn't know what it was so I treated it with Sulphur (old-fashioned I know) When I say sulphur, I mean Sulphur-8 which is a Black hair care product used to achieve a healthy scalp. It worked. Then it started to appear as dry, leathery patches on my neck and under my breasts. I cleared that with constant and very generous slathering of Vaseline. This time which is the 3rd time it has appeared in the last 4 years it came on with a VENGEANCE! Rashes broke out all over my body. I was itching uncontrollably. I am now treating it with cocoa butter. I wash with a cocoa butter shower gel, and I moisturize at least 3 times a day. My skin can dry out in a matter of minutes. The rashes have stopped, now my skin just itches. But it's under control. I meditate now because I recognized that stress is the trigger for the itchy eczema. I purchased air-conditioning because I recognized that indoor heat/sweat is the trigger for the dry leathery eczema. I hope this helps someone.

Comment from: Angel, 45-54 Female Published: October 06

I'm 47 years old and I've lived with eczema all of my life (really it started when I was 4 months old). During childhood, my eczema was so bad I had scabs in every join. As I got older it got better but has not gone away. I've tried all there is to try and the only thing that seems to work to a certain point has been creams and ointments with cortizone. Stress does make it worse and when the climate changes my skin also gets worse. Now that I am getting close to menopause my eczema is getting as bad as it was when I was a child. Also, because I have been using creams and ointments with cortozone for so many years, my sking now is so thin that I mark easily. Years ago, I had the most wonderful 2 weeks in my life. My eczema did not bother me at all. What happened? I was in Jamaica! It was the first time I went in sea water. At first I believed that my skin would burn with the contact of salt water but that was not the case. With in a few days, my skin was normal like every body. I had to put sun screen protection but no itching at all. Best of luck to does that suffer from this problem.

Comment from: carol, 55-64 Female (Patient) Published: April 26

I am 59 and have suffered with eczema my entire life. I have tried everything to get rid of it. I too have gotten completely cleared by cortisone shots, with the rash coming back worse afterwards. I only use skin cleanser, not soap, special laundry detergent, only wear cotton, can't take ace inhibitors or calcium channel blockers because it breaks me out (painfully). I take allergy shots but just read here it won't help eczema (bummer) I am going to investigate the PUVA light. I have been having a little luck with spreading melted soy candle wax on the itchy areas. I wish someone could help!

Patient Comments & Reviews

REFERENCES:

Coenraads, Pieter-Jan. "Hand Eczema." The New England Journal of Medicine 367 (2012): 1829-1837.

Wasserbauer, N., and M. Ballow. "Atopic Dermatitis." Am J Med. 122.2 Feb. 2009: 121-125.

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