What is Dyshidrotic Eczema?

Dyshidrotic eczema, or dyshidrosis, is a common type of eczema that occurs on the feet and hands. It is also known by several other names: pompholyx eczema, palmoplantar eczema, foot-and-hand eczema and vesicular eczema.

While all forms of eczema result in redness and itching, some forms can be slightly different. This is the case with dyshidrotic eczema, which is characterized by blisters that develop on the soles of the feet and/or the palms of the hands.

The fluid-filled blisters usually last about three weeks, after which they dry and appear scaly. These blisters typically recur regularly and may do so for months or years. This type of eczema is twice as common in women than men, and while other forms of eczema, or atopic dermatitis, may more often affect infants and children, dyshidrotic eczema is usually seen in adults from ages 20 to 40. Half of those with dyshidrotic eczema also have atopic eczema as well.

What Causes Eczema?
The exact cause of dyshidrotic eczema is unknown. However, experts contend that it may be related to allergies, such as hay fever specifically caused by pollen. To this end, an outbreak of blisters may occur more frequently during spring allergy season.

Risk factors for dyshidrotic eczema include:

  • Physical or emotional stress
  • Moist hands and feet from excessive water exposure or excessive sweating
  • Sensitive skin