Eczema (atopic dermatitis)

Eczema (atopic dermatitis)

Baby with eczema, showing rash on elbows, cheeks, and knees.

Eczema, also called atopic dermatitis, is a skin condition that causes intense itching. It causes dry skin and a raised rash. Sometimes the rash develops blisters and crusts.

In lighter skin, the rash may look pink or red. In darker skin, the rash may be hard to see or it may look dark brown, grey, or purple. Or there may be patches of lighter skin.

Eczema can be a long-lasting (chronic) skin problem that requires more than one treatment. In infants, it usually affects the cheeks, the front of the knees, and the back of the elbows.

Current as of: March 22, 2023

Author: Healthwise Staff
Medical Review:
Adam Husney MD - Family Medicine
Martin J. Gabica MD - Family Medicine
Ellen K. Roh MD - Dermatology
Lesley Ryan MD - Family Medicine