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Dermatology/Smooth and desensitized skin on thumb

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Question
For a while now I've been having this inexplicable peeling on the end my thumb (thumbprint side) and at first I thought it was from friction from video game controllers, but I avoided friction with it after a while but it seemed to keep peeling out more. Now the skin is smooth, reddish, and desensitized, it also has these vertical lines going down it too. I've tried covering it to prevent friction entirely, hoping the epidermis would grow back, but it's only made the surface smoother. I don't really see peeling at the edges anymore (except after I shower.) Is it going to be like this permanently? I'm worried because it's messing with my dexterity and it feel like it cuts easier.

Answer
Hand eczema (also known as hand dermatitis) is a common condition affecting up to 10% of the population. It results from a combination of factors, both internal (e.g. your genetic make-up), and external (e.g. contact with irritants and allergens such as chemicals). The irritant nature of some chemicals means that hand eczema is particularly common in people with jobs involving cleaning, catering, hairdressing, healthcare and mechanical work. It is an inflammatory condition and is not contagious, but it can still have a major effect on people’s work, social lives and self-esteem.
The main symptoms of hand eczema include one or more of the following:
Redness (erythema)
Itching
Pain
Dryness, to the point of peeling and flaking
Cracks (fissures)
Blisters (vesicles)
Treatment is with moisturizers like Cerave Cream, or Cutemol Cream and prescription strength cortisone cream like Vanos and avoiding those things that makes the skin worse.

Dermatology

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Michael S. Fisher, <B>Ph.D., M.D.</B>

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