Eczema is a chronic condition that recurs, or becomes periodically ‘inflamed’, and technically cannot be cured but can be managed. Its cause is unknown, but is related to an abnormal response in the immune system. The condition is characterized by dry, red, itchy patches anywhere on the skin. Eczema is a general term for a variety of inflamed skin conditions, one of the most common of which is atopic dermatitis. It is often treated with topical medicine (steroids) by a dermatologist. Since eczema is sensitive to certain triggers, part of the dermatologist’s care will be education as to how an individual can avoid them.
Rashes, of course, are symptoms, and may result from eczema or any number of factors, ranging from allergies to sunburn. A bothersome rash should always be checked by the doctor.