Dermatologic Emergencies

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8. Exfoliative dermatitis
A disease characterized by universal scaling and erythema associated with constitutional symptoms. The causes of exfoliative dermatitis include Psoriasis, Lichen Planus, Pityriasis Rosea, Eczemas, Pityriasis Rubrapilaris, drugs or underlying malignancies. The condition is associated with generalised lymphadenopathy, high output cardiac failure, anemia, hypoproteinemia, enteropathy, pneumonia or septicemia or renal failure.

The patient requires hospitalization and evaluation for systemic complications.
Apart from above conditions, penicillin induced anaphylaxis and acute irritant dermatitis may present as emergencies in dermatology.
A general practitioner should be aware of the dermatological emergencies to clinically recognize the condition early to prevent mortality.

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Exfoliative dermatitis includes also Seborrhea for which a steroid i.e. Betamethasone Valerate 0.2% is prescribed. However a good scrubbing with bath salts, like skin-friendly Epsom Salt (Magnesium Sulphate) after a shower, will have the same temporary effect, without the nasty side-effects of Steroids. On the scalp Alcohol will prevent excessive dandruff for a day or so.


Why this difference between type 1 and type 2 reactions and why there is difference even in treatment also .

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