Seborrheic Dermatitis

Seborrheic dermatitis is also called the common rash.

The word seborrheic is derived from seborrhea, or the excessive production of oil (sebum) from the skin's sebaceous or oil glands. Dermatitis is the inflammation of the skin.

Symptoms of Seborrheic Dermatitis

The symptoms of seborrheic dermatitis are:

  • Rash
  • Red, scaly or flaky skin
  • Dry or greasy in appearance
  • Itching
  • Dandruff

This condition is most often located on parts of the body that have many sebaceous glands, such as:

  • Scalp
  • Nose, eyebrows, and eyelids
  • Ear
  • Navel
  • Chest

Causes of Seborrheic Dermatitis

This common rash is thought to be caused by increased growth of the yeast Pityrosporum ovale, which normally lives on the skin but thrives on oily and warm areas.

Treatment of Seborrheic Dermatitis

Although there is no cure for seborrheic dermatitis, however, it can be controlled by:

  • For scalp rash, using shampoo with selenium sulfide, zinc pyrithione, tar, or sulfur
  • Avoiding scratching the rash
  • Using hydrocortisone lotion to relieve itching

Your doctor may prescribe:

  • Prescription-strength corticosteroid cream or shampoos
  • Antifungal medicine, such as ketoconazole

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