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Eczema and asthma

In urbanized areas, the incidence rate of eczema is as high as 15 to 20%; those in a family with records of allergies have even higher risk. Many people suffer from some form of eczema. Eczema is a common skin disease among children. The main symptoms are dry skin, rashes and itching. It can be a prolonged disease and it usually occurs in children. There are many theories about the causes of eczema. Genetic factors are one of those causes. Recent researches have shown that eczema is caused by the mutations in the filaggrin gene of the skin tissues. Filaggrin mutations cause the skin to become dehydrated easily, lowering its protection function, making it more vulnerable to allergens or microorganisms and eventually leading to eczema.

There are many causes of eczema, including food, inhalable allergens or contacts with certain environmental factors. But for some people, there are no triggers. About a third of children who have eczema will develop asthma later on. Scientists are still trying to explain why there is such a link regarding their sequence of development.

We still do not know whether prompt treatment of eczema will prevent asthma from developing in a later stage in life. But it is itchy and may lead to bacterial infection. Eczema should be treated carefully!