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  • Q&A with Australian Health Practitioners

    Can eczema become infected with bacteria or does it just cause dry, itchy skin?

    Related Topics
    My 1 year old daughter has recently had an outbreak of eczema on her tummy which she has been scratching. My husband read that it can become infected. Is this true?
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    Dr Anne Halbert

    Dermatologist (Skin Specialist)

    Dr Anne Halbert is a paediatric dermatologist in Perth, Western Australia. After completing her dermatology training and becoming a Fellow of the Australasian College of … View Profile

    Yes, infection is a common complication in eczema. It is usually caused by Staph aureus, a common bacteria carried on the hands and in the nose. This infection looks like pimples or golden crusted plaques. In addition to bacterial infections, children with eczema pick up viral infections more easily, such as warts, molluscum and cold sores.

  • Prof Rodney Sinclair

    Dermatologist (Skin Specialist)

    Professor Sinclair is a Professor of Dermatology at the University of Melbourne and Director of Epworth Dermatology. He is past-president of the Australasian Society for … View Profile

    Secondary infection with Golden staph is very common.  If the skin in weeping, or has yellow/Golden crust on the surface then it is almost certainly infected with golden staph.   Subtle infection may be hard to detect, but can still aggrevate eczema.  If you suspect your eczema is infected, see a dermatologist.

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