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30 minutes
First broadcast:
Tuesday 04 August 2009

Dr Mark Porter visits the Centre of Evidence Based Dermatology in Nottingham to find out about the latest reasearch into treating the symptoms of eczema.

One in five children and one in twelve adults are affected by eczema, the dry, cracked and itchy skin commonly found in the crooks of the elbows and knees. Many children grow out of the disorder, but others face a lifetime of creams, moisturisers and trying not to scratch.

There is a lot of conflicting advice about childhood eczema, so Mark visits the Centre of Evidence Based Dermatology to examine the known causes and the best ways of treating the disorder. Will changing your child's diet or getting rid of the family pet make any difference? And what is the safest and most effective way to use steroid creams?

The Centre is also investigating new treatments. Prof Hwyel Williams is currently running a trial to find out if installing a water softener in the home can improve symptoms. But having eczema isn't just about the skin. Mark also finds out about the psychological scars caused by having a severe skin complaint in school, and speaks to a mother and son who are doing their best to keep eczema under control.


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