Erythroderma is a term, which is used to describe severe and widespread, that is throughout reddening of the skin due to inflammatory skin disease.
It is generally associated with exfoliation, that is the skin peeling off in scales or layers and then it is known as Exfoliative dermatitis. Clinicians find out the cause of
Exfoliative dermatitis by knowing the history of illness just before the erythema and scaling and by doing bioposies and performing blood studies. It is also sometimes called, red man syndrome.
It is that in, which no primary cause can be found, inspite of serial examinations and tests. Idiopathic exfoliative dermatitis is characterized by marked palmoplantar keratoderma and a raised level of serum imunoglobulin E (IgE).
Clinical features of Erythroderma
It is characterized by generalized skin redness and swelling. Serous ooze, results in clothes and dressings, sticking to the skin and an unpleasant smell. Scaling occurs 2-6 days after the onset of erythema and appears as fine flakes or large sheets.
Thick scaling may develop on scalp with varying degrees of hair loss including complete baldness. Thickening of palms hands and soles of feet may occur. Abnormal temperature control results in fever and chills.
Electrolyte abnormalities and dehydration occurs because of fluid loss through the skin. Low serum albumin level occurs because of protein loss and increased metabolic rate. Secondary infection may occur with pustules and crusting. There may be swollen lymph nodes, that is lymphodenopathy.
Treatment of Erythoderma
Erythroderma is a serious disease and most patients require hospitalization to restore fluid and electrolyte balance, circulatory status and body temperature. Person should take antibiotics, if secondary infection is present. Antihistamines should be taken for severe itching.
Person should maintain skin moisture with wet dressing, emollients and mild topical steroids. Person should also monitor fluid balance and body temperature and should discontinue all unnecessary medications.