Seborrheic dermatitis can go away without treatment. Or you may need many repeated treatments before your symptoms go away. Daily cleansing with mild soap and shampoo can help reduce oil and dead skin buildup. Your doctor will ask about your symptoms and perform a physical exam of your skin and scalp.
If your doctor is not sure if you have the condition, he or she may do a skin biopsy. This involved cutting or scraping a small sample of the affected skin. Pityrosporum ovale, a lipophilic yeast of the genus Malassezia, has been implicated in the development of this condition, 3 It has been suggested that seborrheic dermatitis is an inflammatory response to this organism, but this remains to be proven, 4 P. Ovale is present in all people.
It’s not clear why some people develop seborrheic dermatitis and others don’t. The colonization rate of the skin affected by this organism may be lower than that of the uninvolved skin, 3 However, the fact that seborrheic dermatitis responds to antifungal drugs strongly suggests the role of yeast in this disorder. They can also develop seborrheic dermatitis at the bottom, where it can be confused with diaper rash, a form of contact dermatitis. Seborrheic dermatitis is a lifelong condition that appears, disappears with treatment, and is exacerbated from time to time.
UV-A and UV-B light from the sun have been shown to kill the type of yeast that grows excessively on the skin of people suffering from seborrheic dermatitis. The explosive appearance of seborrheic dermatitis in a young patient should lead to consideration of the underlying human immunodeficiency virus infection. The topical solution of terbinafine, 1 percent, has also been shown to be effective in treating seborrhea of the scalp. Typical symmetrical distribution of seborrheic dermatitis on the head (top) and on the body (bottom).
Seborrheic dermatitis is a skin disorder that primarily affects the scalp and causes itching, yellow or white scales in patches or thick crusts that can stick to the hair shaft, as seen in the lower left of the image. See your doctor if seborrheic dermatitis does not improve, if the area becomes painful, red, or swollen, or if pus begins to drain. Because seborrheic dermatitis may look like other skin conditions, see your doctor for a diagnosis and treatment plan. Treatment with daily doses of isotretinoin as low as 0.1 to 0.3 mg per kg may improve severe seborrhea after four weeks of treatment.
Adults may have seborrheic dermatitis on the face, especially around the nose, on the eyebrows, on the eyelids, or behind the ears. Although seborrheic dermatitis affects only 3 percent of the general population, the incidence in people with acquired immunodeficiency syndrome can reach 85 percent. The exact mechanism by which human immunodeficiency virus infection promotes an atypical and explosive onset of seborrheic dermatitis (and other common inflammatory skin disorders) is unknown, but many factors have been explored, including CD4,5 P-positive T cell counts. characterized by pink erythema and fine scaling in a 68-year-old Caucasian male.