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Contact dermatitis in children

William L Weston, MD
Section Editor
Moise L Levy, MD
Deputy Editor
Rosamaria Corona, MD, DSc


Contact dermatitis refers to inflammation of the dermis and epidermis as a result of direct contact between a substance and the surface of the skin. In fact, almost all dermatitis is the result of skin surface injury from epicutaneous exposures. Contact dermatitis is divided into two broad categories: irritant contact dermatitis and allergic contact dermatitis. Irritants cause immediate inflammation of the skin; allergens cause an inflammatory response that is delayed by days.

This topic will discuss irritant and allergic contact dermatitis in children. Contact dermatitis in adults is discussed separately.

(See "Irritant contact dermatitis in adults".)

(See "Basic mechanisms and pathophysiology of allergic contact dermatitis".)

(See "Clinical features and diagnosis of allergic contact dermatitis".)

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Literature review current through: Nov 2017. | This topic last updated: Mar 07, 2017.
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