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What Causes Dyshidrotic Eczema On Feet

What Causes Dyshidrotic Eczema

Dyshidrotic eczema on feet causes, symptoms, risk factors, treatment options, Feet pompholyx blister

This is still a bit of a mystery. In studying this disease, researchers have learned that it is NOT caused by a problem with a persons sweat ducts, as previously thought.

It appears that people who get dyshidrotic eczema have a hypersensitivity to something. The list of things that can cause this hypersensitivity include:

  • Metal, especially nickel or cobalt

  • An ingredient in a personal care product

  • Medication, especially aspirin or birth control pills

  • An infusion of intravenous immunoglobulin

  • Smoking tobacco

  • A skin infection, such as athletes foot

When you come into contact with something that causes a hypersensitivity, its thought that this triggers the dyshidrotic eczema. For example, if you have a hypersensitivity to an ingredient in your soap, dyshidrotic eczema may flare up every time you use that soap.

Some people find that when they avoid what causes this hypersensitivity, they avoid flare-ups. For example, if you have dyshidrotic eczema on your hands and you are hypersensitive to the fungus that causes athletes foot, getting rid of the athletes foot may get rid of the dyshidrotic eczema on your hands. You may never get another flare-up of dyshidrotic eczema unless you develop athletes foot again.

What Is Dyshidrotic Dermatitis

Dyshidrotic eczema is a skin condition in which small, fluid-filled blisters form on the soles of your feet and/or the palms of your hands or side of your figures. These blisters will come and go at random times. Currently, there is no cure for the condition. However, the use of medicine, moisturizers, and good hygiene can help individuals manage the condition. Our Moisture-All Lotion has been a great solution to help relieve and hydrate sensitive skin where the condition is present.

Typically, dyshidrotic eczema starts to become less present as the individual ages. Middle age is when people usually see the condition start to fade. Foot-and-hand eczema is usually present in adults ages 20 to 40 and is twice as common in women as in men. If an individual has a mild case of dyshidrosis, it will eventually go away on its own.

Treatment Of Foot Eczema

In order to properly treat your foot eczema, its important to visit your doctor. Athletes foot and foot eczema are entirely separate conditions that require different treatment.

If you have been diagnosed with foot eczema and steroid or prescription creams are not working for you, using both natural eczema treatments and eczema socks can help provide necessary relief.


For foot eczema to heal properly, it needs to be kept properly aired out, so that it is free from sweat. These Hypoallergenic Socks are the perfect eczema socks, as theyre made of 100% organic cotton and are latex-free and elastic free, so completely comfortable and non-irritating. We also love these new adult socks for foot eczema from Remedywear! Why are they great? The fabric is composed of TENCEL and zinc for double the relief and comfort. They come in kids sizes too.

Dry or Wet Wrap Therapy

Both socks can also be used for wet wrap therapy, which will keep skin hydrated and allow eczema to heal quicker. This type of treatment works by wearing one damp pair of eczema socks covered with a dry pair AND a natural cream or balm such as the Organic Manuka Skin Soothing Cream or Emily Skin Soothers Super Dry Soother to heal eczema quickly and painlessly. Dry wrapping is much easier and less messy and we like to recommend it as a first line of defense. Learn all about dry wrapping.

Do you have foot eczema? Let us know how you treat it in the comments below!

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Switch To Another Therapy

There isnt one single treatment that can reduce your eczema symptoms. Rather, numerous therapies can calm your dry, itchy skin.

Its important to note, though, that a therapy that works for one person may not work for another. So, you may have to experiment with different treatments until you find one that works for you.

If youre not seeing results from a treatment, theres no need to stay on it. Given the multitude of options to reduce skin inflammation, you dont have to continue an ineffective treatment.

Initially, you might use over-the-counter topical eczema steroid creams that contain hydrocortisone. These creams can control itching and reduce redness and swelling.

If your eczema worsens and OTC treatments stop working, its time to consider other options. Eczema is an inflammatory disease, and steroids have an anti-inflammatory effect on the body. These steroids can include prescription-strength steroid creams, or your doctor may also suggest an oral steroid like prednisone.

A newer FDA-approved steroid-free prescription ointment for those older than 2 years old is crisaborole, which reduces redness and swelling of the skin, as well as prevents new redness and swelling.

Other nonsteroidal topical treatments include topical immunomodulators , like tacrolimus or pimecrolimus . Also known as topical calcineurin inhibitors, they work by changing the bodys immune response to allergens. They have fewer side effects than steroids.

Treating Dyshidrotic Eczema At Home

Dyshidrotic Eczema on the feet
  • 1Use cold and wet compresses to relieve irritation. Cold compresses can help relieve the itching and/or burning sensation caused by eczema. Cold therapy can also reduce the inflammation of the blisters and help numb the irritated nerve endings with generate pain. Soak a clean, soft cloth in cold water and put it in the fridge for a few hours before wrapping around your inflamed hands or feet.
  • Wrap your inflamed skin with the cold compress for at least 15 minutes, two to three times daily or as needed.
  • To make the cold compress last a little longer, place crushed ice in a small plastic bag and wrap it with a soft cloth before applying to your skin.
  • Avoid soaking your inflamed hands or feet in ice â it may give relief initially, but it can cause shock to your blood vessels and lead to frostbite.
  • 2Apply aloe vera. Aloe vera gel is a popular herbal remedy for inflamed and irritated skin. It has a strong ability to not only soothe irritated itchy skin and reduce tenderness caused by dyshidrotic eczema but it also significantly speeds up the healing process.XTrustworthy SourcePubMed CentralJournal archive from the U.S. National Institutes of HealthGo to source Aloe vera also has antimicrobial properties, which is helpful if your eczema is triggered or exacerbated by fungal or bacterial infections. Applying aloe vera multiple times per day for the first few days after you notice redness and irritation on your hands or feet can make a significant impact on combating eczema.
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    Favorite App For Managing Dyshidrotic Eczema

    Eczema Tracker

    When youre in the middle of a flare-up, its easy to forget how it developed. Eczema Tracker allows you to keep track of triggers and symptoms, and get useful advice for managing the condition. Take a photo of your skin on good days and flare-up days, so you can better gauge the state of your skin today. Local reports on weather and humidity can help you to anticipate future symptoms, and the app analyzes your data to help you find trends that tend to lead to flare-ups.

    Additional reporting by Anne L. Fritz.

    What Are The Symptoms Of Pompholyx

    At first, there are tiny blisters in the skin of the hands or feet. They are located on the palms or fingers of the hands and on the toes or soles of the feet. The blisters may feel itchy or burning sensation. Sometimes the small blisters can merge to form larger ones. As the blisters start to heal, the skin goes through a dry stage where there are cracks or peeling skin.

    If there is severe pompholyx near the fingernails or toenails then the nails may have ridges, or there may be swelling at the base of the nail .

    Sometimes the blisters or skin cracks can become infected. If so, there may be yellow fluid in the blisters or cracks. Or, there may be increasing redness, pain, swelling or crusting of the affected skin. See a doctor urgently if you have these symptoms or if you suspect an infection.

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    Causes Of Dyshidrotic Eczema

    The causes of dyshidrotic eczema are not yet understood, but the condition is more common in women and individuals who also have another type of eczema. It often runs in families. This condition most commonly occurs in adults between ages 20 to 40, who may experience a single flare-up but are more likely to experience worsening and improving symptoms over time.

    Dyshidrotic eczema may have many triggers, including stress, nickel , and sweaty palms. It is also associated with warm, humid weather and seasonal allergies.

    How Can Dyshidrotic Eczema Become Infected

    DYSHIDROTIC ECZEMA OR POMPHOLYX: Causes,Symptoms, & Treatment – Dr. Aruna Prasad | Doctors’ Circle

    Dyshidrotic eczema can cause blisters and dry, cracked skin. Scratching your skin can cause further irritation and create small wounds. Your skin may become infected due to cracked skin, fissures, and open wounds that allow viruses, fungi, and bacteria to enter your skin.

    Bacteria like Streptococcus or Staphylococcuscan also cause infected eczema. Staphylococcus is a type of bacteria that lives on your skin. It may enter wounds or broken skin to cause a staph infection.

    Symptoms of a bacterial infection include:

    • pain
    • blistered skin

    You can treat a bacterial infection with antibiotics or antiseptics.

    Candida is a common fungal infection that can occur along with dyshidrotic eczema. You can treat fungal infections with antifungal creams or tablets.

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    Treatments For Mild Outbreaks

    Pimecrolimus cream, tacrolimus ointment, or Eucrisa, are typically used to treat atopic dermatitis. But they have also been shown to be effective for dyshidrotic eczema.

    For mild flare-ups, your doctor may recommend:

    • a moisturizer thats very emollient to help relieve the dryness
    • a prescription corticosteroid that helps heal the blisters and reduces inflammation
    • anti-itch medication in the form of a pill or cream

    Treatments For Dyshidrotic Eczema

    At Mount Sinai, our specialists have extensive experience treating dyshidrotic eczema. The condition can typically be diagnosed through a skin exam and discussion of your medical history.

    In addition to identifying and helping you avoid triggers, our dermatologists provide the following treatments for dyshidrotic eczema:

    • Lifestyle practices, including cleanser and moisturizer regimens and stress management
    • Corticosteroids, applied topically
    • Anti-fungal medication, if fungal growth develops
    • Oral antibiotics, if a bacterial skin infection develops
    • Light therapy, if flares are frequent or severe

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    What Are The Treatments For Severe Pompholyx Eczema

    For severe pompholyx eczema, a dermatology referral may be required for treatment and/or diagnosing contact allergy . Treatment may include a short course of oral immunosuppressant drugs. Alitretinoin is an oral treatment licensed for use in adults with severe chronic hand eczema that has not responded to treatment with potent topical steroids. Alitretinoin works by reducing the inflammation associated with eczema as well as damping down the response of the immune system. It is a capsule that is taken by mouth once a day with a meal for 12-24 weeks, depending on how the condition responds to the treatment.

    Alitretinoin can only be prescribed by dermatologists or doctors with experience both in managing severe hand eczema and in the use of retinoids. The specialist will determine whether your hand eczema is severe by examining your hands and asking a series of questions about how the eczema affects your life. You will also need to be carefully monitored.

    Retinoids are likely to cause severe birth defects if taken during pregnancy. This means that any woman with child-bearing potential must avoid becoming pregnant during treatment and for one month after stopping treatment for example, by using two effective methods of contraception. The drug can only be prescribed if a pregnancy test is negative. Regular pregnancy tests will be taken during treatment.

    You should not breastfeed while taking alitretinoin and for a month after completing treatment.

    Wait How Do I Know That’s What I Have

    Dermatology: A Morphologic Approach to Differential Diagnosis: August ...

    Dyshidtrotic eczema looks a little different than your standard eczema rash, says Shah. You’ll see firm, deep, fluid-filled bumps that have the consistency of tapioca pudding , explains Shah.

    These itchy suckers start off as small bumps on the edges of your hands and feet. But they can turn into larger blisters that rupture after a week or two and leave behind angry, red, scaly skin. So. Fun.

    Unlike atopic dermatitis , dyshidtrotic eczema only shows up on your hands and feet, not on your whole body, says Shah.

    And this “rose” goes by many names, according to the American Academy of Dermatology :

    • Cheiropompholyx
    • Vesicular palmoplantar eczema

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    How Does Dyshidrotic Eczema Affect My Body

    Dyshidrotic eczema affects the skin around the palms of your hands, fingers and soles of your feet.

    Your skin may develop bumps or blisters that look like tapioca pearls. These blisters are typically one to two millimeters in diameter. The blisters may come together to form one large blister.

    After your blisters have dried out, they may become scaly and cracked.

    What Is Dyshidrotic Eczema

    Dyshidrotic eczema is a sudden rash of small, itchy blisters on your palms and along the sides of your fingers. This skin condition can also make blisters pop up on the soles of your feet or on your toes.

    Your doctor might call it by another name, including dyshidrosis, foot-and-hand eczema, pompholyx, vesicular eczema, or palmoplantar eczema.

    Thereâs no cure, so these blisters will come and go over time. But you can manage them with medicine, moisturizers, and good hygiene. They might start to taper off once you get into middle age. And if you have a mild case, it could go away on its own.

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    Treatment And Medication Options For Dyshidrotic Eczema

    While there is no cure for dyshidrotic eczema, as Lio says, you can manage most of the symptoms on your own with a doctors direction.

    Typically, we start with gentle skin care and avoiding triggers, he says. I have some favorite gentle cleansers to use instead of harsh soaps, some super-protective moisturizers, and even a gentle hand sanitizer. If that is enough , then we can get by without any medications at all.

    Dr. Kindred says that keeping skin moisturized is an important part of treating dyshidrotic eczema. Use lotions containing ceramides and then cover with a barrier ointment, such as petroleum jelly, she says.

    The AAD has additional tips for self-care, such as how to cleanse, moisturize, and avoid triggers.

    But with more severe dyshidrotic eczema, medication and other treatments are necessary for symptom relief, say both doctors.

    What Is Dyshidrotic Eczema Symptoms Causes Diagnosis Treatment And Prevention

    Dyshidrotic Eczema Causes, Types, Symptoms, Treatment, Remedies, and Prevention | Pompholyx eczema

    Dyshidrotic eczema is a type of dermatitis that affects the hands and feet. It is also known as dyshidrosis, dyshidrotic dermatitis, foot-and-hand eczema, pompholyx, and vesicular eczema, according to the American Academy of Dermatology Association .

    It is characterized by tiny blisters or vesicles, usually between the digits, and it can be extremely itchy, says Peter Lio, MD, a dermatologist who is a clinical assistant professor in the department of dermatology and pediatrics at Northwestern University’s Feinberg School of Medicine in Chicago, as well as a board member and scientific advisory committee member for the National Eczema Association . Certain triggers can also make it flare, such as contact with irritating chemicals like soaps or detergents or hand sanitizers, sweating, seasonal changes, and sometimes even just stress.

    Other causes and triggers include allergic skin reactions, atopic dermatitis, fungal and bacterial infections, exposure to nickel or cobalt, and excessive exposure to water, according to Chesahna Kindred, MD, a dermatologist in Columbia, Maryland, who is an assistant professor at Howard University College of Medicine in Washington, DC.

    Dyshidrotic eczema is also a side effect of intravenous immunoglobulin infusions , which are typically used to treat certain immune system diseases, according to the AAD. Exposure to cement is another risk factor.

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    What is dyshidrotic eczema?

    Dyshidrotic eczema is a skin condition similar to atopic dermatitis or contact dermatitis that mainly effects the hands, fingers, palms and feet. It is sometimes referred to as hand eczema, dyshidrosis or pompholyx and its location makes it difficult to treat. Symptoms include intensely itchy, painful blisters that can peel, scale and split the skin. Some have likened dyshidrotic eczema to tapioca pudding.

    What causes dyshidrotic eczema?

    Dyshidrotic eczema is often thought to be a manifestation of eczema-like conditions. A history of atopic dermatitis, allergic contact dermatitis, exposure to irritants, smoking, sunlight and hyperhidrosis have been associated.

    Is it contagious?

    Dyshidrotic eczema is not contagious. You cannot catch it from someone who has it or give it to someone else.

    New, potential treatment for dyshidrotic eczema.

    The Journal of Drugs in Dermatology has published case reports results including the successful treatment of dyshidrotic eczema with dupliumab. Although additional controlled clinical studies are warranted, dupliumab has proven useful in the management of multiple patients with dyshidrotic eczema. Dupilumab is an interleukin 4 receptor- antagonist that inhibits the action of both IL-4 and IL-13, thus blocking two important cytokines responsible for Th2-mediated inflammation.

    The JDD case studies are available to learn more.

    Try To Reduce The Damage From Scratching

    Eczema is often itchy, and it can be very tempting to scratch the affected areas of skin.

    But scratching usually damages the skin, which can itself cause more eczema to occur.

    The skin eventually thickens into leathery areas as a result of chronic scratching.

    Deep scratching also causes bleeding and increases the risk of your skin becoming infected or scarred.

    Try to reduce scratching whenever possible. You could try gently rubbing your skin with your fingers instead.

    If your baby has atopic eczema, anti-scratch mittens may stop them scratching their skin.

    Keep your nails short and clean to minimise damage to the skin from unintentional scratching.

    Keep your skin covered with light clothing to reduce damage from habitual scratching.

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