Hand dermatitis: an allergist's nightmare

Curr Allergy Asthma Rep. 2014 Nov;14(11):474. doi: 10.1007/s11882-014-0474-0.


Hand dermatitis is a common skin complaint. We use our hands to explore our environment; subsequently, our hands are in frequent contact with potential allergens and irritants. Patients with hand dermatitis may present to their allergist with this complaint. Approaching the diagnosis and treatment of hand dermatitis can be challenging, as both internal and external factors may contribute to the overall condition. Furthermore, the differential diagnosis of hand dermatitis is broad and the cause often multifactorial. Obtaining a thorough history and performing a focused examination may help the clinician differentiate between multiple causes of hand dermatitis. Numerous treatment options exist for hand dermatitis, and new potential treatments are in development as well. We aim to provide the allergist with a streamlined toolkit for help in the diagnosis and management of hand dermatitis.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Administration, Cutaneous
  • Dermatitis, Occupational / diagnosis
  • Dermatitis, Occupational / epidemiology
  • Dermatitis, Occupational / therapy
  • Dermatology
  • Diagnosis, Differential
  • Eczema / diagnosis
  • Eczema / therapy*
  • Glucocorticoids / therapeutic use
  • Hand Dermatoses / diagnosis*
  • Hand Dermatoses / epidemiology
  • Hand Dermatoses / therapy*
  • Humans
  • Radiotherapy
  • Skin / pathology


  • Glucocorticoids