Treatments of Eczema or Atopic Dermatitis in Tunbridge Wells
Allergies and Atopic Dermatitis diagnosis and treatment at rtwskin Dermatology
An Allergy is a ‘hypersensitive’ reaction to substances that are normally tolerated, known as allergens. Common allergens include food, house dust mites, grass pollen, animals and medicines. These allergens trigger the production of a number of harmful antibodies known as immunoglobulin A, E and G (IgA, IgG, IgE). Atopy, means having a genetic tendency for the immune system to make increased levels of IgE antibodies to certain allergens. Atopic Dermatitis is often called eczema.
rtwskin works in partnership with The Spire Hospital Pathology Laboratory to perform blood tests for specific blood allergy profiles IgE, IgG and IgA.
Please stop any antihistamine medication 3 days before your consultation and if possible bring in a list of suspected causes for your allergy.
Once the allergies have been identified, our dermatologist will create a bespoke treatment plan. This method has already provided long-term success for many patients. The treatment chosen by the doctor depends on the pattern, severity and duration of your eczema and will be prescribed for accordingly, to:
Reduce skin inflammation (redness and swelling)
Reduce new lesions from forming
There is no known cure for atopic dermatitis (eczema). It’s important to recognise the condition early so you can start treatment. A treatment plan often includes medicine, phototherapy, skincare and lifestyle changes
Our dermatologist may be able to offer you the following:
Topical creams and ointments – these suppress your immune system and help repair the skin, such as topical corticosteroids, pimecrolimus and tacrolimus.
Antihistamines – these are often helpful in stabilising atopic dermatitis and may reduce the itch.
Phototherapy with Excimer Laser– ultraviolet (UV) light that reduces inflammation, helps to calm and heal your skin. If the eczema has failed to respond to topical treatments or is too severe for topical treatments alone, ultraviolet light (phototherapy) may be helpful.
Review of your existing treatment plan – to make sure you are using the correct products for your skin condition.
Immunosuppressant tablets – oral medication may be offered to those with severe or treatment-resistant eczema to suppress your immune system.
Skincare – skincare and lifestyle changes can help prevent flare-ups.
Phototherapy with Excimer Laser
DEKA Excilite-µ, the Excimer Laser offers a revolutionary new treatment for patients suffering from eczema. This laser uses a focused beam of light at 308nm, delivered through a sophisticated fiber optic device. In contrast to conventional UVB light systems, DEKA Excilite-µ, laser enables the precise target of the eczematous patches at higher energy doses and short treatment times with the minimum risk of exposure to the healthy skin. Patients can often obtain relief in just four to eight brief sessions.
UVB light at 308nm wavelength slows down the multiplication of skin cells by suppressing the formation of DNA in cells. Under carefully controlled energy parameters UVB 308nm rays help to calm and heal the skin.
UVB light alters the function of immune cells in the skin but in doing so does not appear to affect our normal immunity. This is how ultraviolet light helps some types of eczema and psoriasis.
DEKA Excilite-µ laser system is light years ahead of other eczema treatments. On your first visit, we will test your skin to determine your optimum dosage level. Then, 24 hours later, a painless, concentrated beam of light is applied through a hand piece directly to the skin. As it is only the affected areas of skin treated, the Excimer light can be administered in a much higher dose, leading to faster results and longer remission. This therapy has been successful in cases that were previously considered difficult to treat.
If you have mild to moderate atopic dermatitis or eczema, and you are unhappy with your current method of treatment, you should consider treatment with DEKA Excilite-µ laser system. Patients with well-demarcated skin lesions and a total diseased skin area of up to 15-20% are ideally suited to this form of treatment. The procedure is not suited to the treatment of very large areas of skin.
Each case is unique, but eczema sufferers who have experienced Excimer treatment have found that relief can last for extended periods of time.
Safety & Side Effects
The laser has been proven to be safe when used properly. The specific risks and the suitability of these procedures for a given individual can be determined only at the time of consultation. All laser procedures have some degree of risk. Minor complications that do not affect the outcome occur occasionally. It is important to understand that there is no guarantee of cure of this disease. The best result would be long term remission, but there is no guarantee of the percentage of improvement per lesion, per eczematous plaque o after any given session or indeed once all the sessions are completed.
Most patients feel no pain or discomfort during the short Excimer treatment sessions. A few patients report feeling a warm sensation like a mild sunburn at the site of the lesion. The Excimer system can be used successfully on hard to treat areas of the body such as elbows and knees.
Do not apply any creams or sunscreens to the affected areas before your treatment. The light needs to penetrate as deep as possible
Avoid excessive sun exposure. This is an ultraviolet light-based treatment. It is imperative that you do not sunbathe afterwards. It is also important that you do not plan vacations until 4-5 weeks after treatment.
YOU MAY CONTINUE TO APPLY ANY CREAMS USED PREVIOUSLY IF YOU ARE DRY OR ITCHING, ALTHOUGH IT IS ADVISED TO REFRAIN PRIOR TO A TREATMENT SESSION!