Eczema types: Nummular eczema overview
What is nummular eczema?
Like other types of eczema, nummular eczema is very itchy. It causes itchy, raised, and round to oval spots on the skin that can grow together to form large, slightly raised patches.
Is nummular eczema contagious?
No. You cannot catch nummular eczema or give it to anyone.
This type of eczema tends to:
Develop on extremely dry skin
Appear after an injury like a cut, bug bite, or scrape
Be more common in people who already have one of these eczemas: atopic dermatitis, stasis dermatitis, or contact dermatitis
When caught early and treated properly, nummular eczema can heal within 3 to 4 weeks.
This type of eczema often causes round, itchy spots on the hands, forearms, or lower legs.
Once you have had nummular eczema, it can return. It tends to appear in the same place. Usually, something triggers it. Common triggers include stress, extremely dry skin, certain medications, or a hypersensitivity to something that’s touching your skin.
If you continue to have flare-ups, seeing a dermatologist can help. If you have a hypersensitivity, a dermatologist may be able to pinpoint it. Avoiding your hypersensitivity along with using proper skin care can prevent new flare-ups.
It’s also possible that those round, itchy spots are due to another skin condition. Ringworm and psoriasis can look like nummular eczema. A dermatologist’s trained eye can see the subtle differences on a person’s skin.
For any condition you may have, proper treatment can help ease your discomfort and reduce flare-ups.
If you have nummular eczema, it’s important to know that this condition can cause more than itchy, round to oval spots on your skin. You’ll find other symptoms and several pictures of what it can look like at: Nummular eczema: Signs and symptoms.
Image used with permission of the American Academy of Dermatology National Library of Dermatologic Teaching Slides.
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Paula Ludmann, MS
Erin Ducharme, MD, FAAD
Amanda Friedrichs, MD, FAAD
Last updated: 3/15/21