Signs and Symptoms and Causes
Symptoms of eczema occur repeatedly. The most common signs of eczema are:

Dry, extremely itchy skin

Blisters with oozing and crusting

Redness of the skin around the blisters

Raw areas of the skin from scratching which may even lead to bleeding

Dry, leathery areas with more or less pigment than their normal skin tone (called lichenification)

Eczema in children under 2 years old generally begins on the cheeks, elbows, or knees. In adults, it tends to be located on the inside surfaces of the knees and elbows.


The cause of eczema is thought to be a combination of hereditary (genetic) and environmental factors. This means that factors such as allergies can cause eczema in susceptible people. Exposure to certain irritants and allergens (see Lifestyle section for further definition of these substances) in the environment can worsen symptoms as can dryness of the skin, exposure to water, temperature changes, and stress.

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