Complete Medical Guide for Disease Volume VII; Atopic Dermatitis
Atopic dermatitis (AD, a type of eczema) is an inflammatory, chronically relapsing, non-contagious and pruritic (that is, itchy) skin disorder. It has been given names like "prurigo Besnier," "neurodermitis," "endogenous eczema," "flexural eczema," "infantile eczema," and "prurigo diathésique".
The skin of a patient with atopic dermatitis reacts abnormally and easily to irritants, food, and environmental allergens and becomes red, flaky and very itchy. It also becomes vulnerable to surface infections caused by bacteria. The skin on the flexural surfaces of the joints (for example inner sides of elbows and knees) are the most commonly affected regions in people.
Atopic dermatitis often occurs together with other atopic diseases like hay fever, asthma and allergic conjunctivitis. It is a familial and chronic disease and its symptoms can increase or disappear over time.