Merck Manual

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Diagnostic Clinical Features in Atopic Dermatitis*

Diagnostic Clinical Features in Atopic Dermatitis*

Essential features

Dermatitis (eczema)—acute, subacute, or chronic, with

  • Typical age-specific patterns†

  • Chronic or relapsing history

Important features

Early age of onset

Personal or family history of atopic disease

IgE reactivity

Associated features (help to suggest the diagnosis)

White dermatographism

Pityriasis alba

Hyperlinear palms

Facial pallor

Infraorbital folds

Nipple dermatitis

Perifollicular accentuation

Lichenification

Prurigo lesions

Delayed blanch response

Certain regional changes (eg, perioral changes, periauricular changes)

* Derived from: Guidelines of care for the management of atopic dermatitis: Section 1. Diagnosis and assessment of atopic dermatitis. J Am Acad Dermatol 70(2):338–351, 2014, doi: 10.1016/j.jaad.2013.10.010, and Eichenfield LF, Hanifin JM, Luger TA, et al: Consensus conference on pediatric atopic dermatitis. J Am Acad Dermatol 49:1088–1095, 2003. doi: 10.1016/s0190-9622(03)02539-8

† On the face, neck, and extensor surfaces in infants and children; flexural surfaces in any age group; spares groin and axillae.