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Patient Journey Through Early Atopic Dermatitis Treatment


Diego Ruiz Dasilva, MD, FAAD, and Trinity Flint discuss early treatment of her atopic dermatitis, focusing on topical treatment.

Diego Ruiz Dasilva, MD, FAAD: You talked a lot about different treatments for atopic dermatitis. Tell me about some of the topical treatments, whether it’s moisturizers or topical medicines. What are some of the regimens you remember doing or learning about when you were a child and later in life?

Trinity Flint: I would always try to stay moisturized. I’d use the basic moisturizers that my dermatologist would recommend. That helped with moisture, but it didn’t help with itchiness. There were a lot of steroid creams. I tried the over-the-counter cortisone, but that caused an immense amount of pain. It burned very badly.

Diego Ruiz Dasilva, MD, FAAD: That’sa common 1 that patients with mild eczema might respond great to. But it wasn’t perfect for you.

Trinity Flint: It worked for a second. It was never a permanent or long-term solution for me.

Diego Ruiz Dasilva, MD, FAAD: That’s definitely challenging. Do you remember around those times or later in life getting steroid pills or shots for eczema or itching?

Trinity Flint: No, I was never recommended steroid shots or pills until I went to you.

Diego Ruiz Dasilva, MD, FAAD: That’s something that many patients get recommended. There are pros and cons, which I’ll talk about. A lot of ED [emergency department] and primary care doctors give that, and they can be a Band-Aid to help with itching in the short term. But similar to the experience that you described with the triamcinolone, it’s not a solution. It’s not something you can be on for the long term. It strings you along and can offer false hope at times. When you were a child, was it just your pediatrician taking care of you? It’s fine if you don’t remember. Or were you seeing dermatologists at that time?

Trinity Flint: It was just my pediatrician for a long time. Once I got into middle school, reaching puberty, my family was told that we should try a dermatologist, so we did. We were referred to 1, and we tried that 1 for a bit. After that, we hopped around.

Diego Ruiz Dasilva, MD, FAAD: Nothing was providing a long-term solution for you, not even a specialist. Did you ever see an allergist or any other doctor to try to help?

Trinity Flint: No, I haven’t seen an allergist.

Transcript edited for clarity

Related Videos
Video 2 - "Atopic Dermatitis and Contact Dermatitis: Navigating Intersecting Pathways and Optimal Management Strategies"
Video 1 - "Decoding Atypical Atopic Dermatitis: Unraveling Complex Cases and Advanced Diagnostic Strategies"
Elizabeth Kiracofe, MD, an expert on atopic dermatitis
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