Scratching the hands when they itch only makes the condition worse. Yet scratching can be hard to stop.
Anti-itch medicines taken by mouth, such as diphenhydramine (Benadryl) and loratiadine (such as Claritin), may help you break this cycle. If you scratch while asleep, take an anti-itch medicine before bed.
Ointments or creams should be used on the hands at least two times per day, and after every hand washing.
Your doctor may prescribe steroid (or corticosteroid) ointments creams, or other creams or ointments such as tacrolimus or pimecrolimus.
Your doctor may recommend the following if you have severe symptoms:
Do not scratch the blisters. You should avoid frequent bathing, hand washing, and irritating substances, which can make itching worse.
There is no cure. Dyshidrotic eczema normally goes away without problems, but symptoms may return later. Excess scratching may lead to thick, irritated skin, which is more difficult to treat and takes longer to heal.
Call your doctor if you have:
Veien NK. Acute and recurrent vesicular hand dermatitis. Dermatol Clin. 2009 Jul;27(3):337-53.
Eczema and hand dermatitis. In: Habif TP, ed. Clinical Dermatology. 5th ed. Philadelphia, Pa: Mosby Elsevier; 2009:chap 3.
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