Hand Dermatitis

  • John EnglishEmail author
  • Angelo Massimiliano D’Erme
  • Massimo Gola


Hand dermatitis, also known as hand eczema (HE), is the most common skin disorder affecting the hands. It is not a homogeneous disease, and it can occur in many and various forms either for clinical presentation or for severity. A wide range of clinical presentation has been reported: from mild, acute, and self-limiting forms to chronic and severe, refractory to treatment.


  1. Diepgen TL, Elsner P, Schliemann S, Fartasch M, Köllner A, Skudlik C, John SM, Worm M, Deutsche Dermatologische Gesellschaft. Guideline on the management of hand eczema ICD-10 Code: L20. L23. L24. L25. L30. J Dtsch Dermatol Ges. 2009;7 Suppl 3:S1–16.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  2. English J, Aldridge R, Gawkrodger DJ, Kownacki S, Statham B, White JM, Williams J. Consensus statement on the management of chronic hand eczema. Clin Exp Dermatol. 2009;34(7):761–9.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  3. Ruzicka T, Lynde CW, Jemec GB, Diepgen T, Berth-Jones J, Coenraads PJ, Kaszuba A, Bissonnette R, Varjonen E, Holló P, Cambazard F, Lahfa M, Elsner P, Nyberg F, Svensson A, Brown TC, Harsch M, Maares J. Efficacy and safety of oral alitretinoin (9-cis retinoic acid) in patients with severe chronic hand eczema refractory to topical corticosteroids: results of a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled, multicentre trial. Br J Dermatol. 2008;158(4):808–17.PubMedGoogle Scholar

Further Reading

  1. Augustin M, Kuessner D, Purwins S, Hieke K, Posthumus J, Diepgen TL. Cost-of-illness of patients with chronic hand eczema in routine care: results from a multicentre study in Germany. Br J Dermatol. 2011;165(4):845–51.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  2. Bissonnette R, Diepgen TL, Elsner P, English J, Graham-Brown R, Homey B, Luger T, Lynde C, Maares J, Maibach HI. Redefining treatment options in chronic hand eczema (CHE). J Eur Acad Dermatol Venereol. 2010;24 Suppl 3:1–20.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  3. Bissonnette R, Worm M, Gerlach B, Guenther L, Cambazard F, Ruzicka T, Maares J, Brown TC. Successful retreatment with alitretinoin in patients with relapsed chronic hand eczema. Br J Dermatol. 2010;162(2):420–6.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  4. Boehm D, Schmid-Ott G, Finkeldey F, John SM, Dwinger C, Werfel T, Diepgen TL, Breuer K. Anxiety, depression and impaired health-related quality of life in patients with occupational hand eczema. Contact Dermatitis. 2012;67(4):184–92.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  5. Coenraads PJ, Van Der Walle H, Thestrup-Pedersen K, Ruzicka T, Dreno B, De La Loge C, et al. Construction and validation of a photographic guide for assessing severity of chronic hand dermatitis. Br J Dermatol. 2005;152:296–301.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  6. Cortesi PA, Scalone L, Giannetti A, Angelini G, Belisari A, Cannavò SP, Cristaudo A, De Pità O, Gallo R, Gola M, Pigatto P, Mantovani LG; for the Italian Hand Eczema Study Group. Cost and quality of life in patients with severe chronic hand eczema refractory to standard therapy with topical potent corticosteroids. Contact Dermatitis. 2014;70(3):158–68.Google Scholar
  7. Diepgen TL. Life-style factors and hand eczema. Br J Dermatol. 2011;165(3):455.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  8. Diepgen TL, Pfarr E, Zimmermann T. Efficacy and tolerability of alitretinoin for chronic hand eczema under daily practice conditions: results of the TOCCATA open study comprising 680 patients. Acta Derm Venereol. 2012;92(3):251–5.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  9. Dirschka T, Reich K, Bissonnette R, Maares J, Brown T, Diepgen TL. An open-label study assessing the safety and efficacy of alitretinoin in patients with severe chronic hand eczema unresponsive to topical corticosteroids. Clin Exp Dermatol. 2011;36(2):149–54.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  10. English JS. Managing chronic hand eczema. Br J Dermatol. 2010;162(2):237.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  11. English JS. Measure the extent of hand eczema rather than its severity? Br J Dermatol. 2011;165(1):1.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  12. English J, Graham-Brown R, de Sica Chapman A, Alexandroff AB. Everyday clinical experience of alitretinoin in the treatment of severe chronic hand eczema: seven case studies. Clin Exp Dermatol. 2011;36(Suppl):1–2.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  13. Gola M, D’Erme AM, Milanesi N, Marmugi L. Effects of alitretinoin on quality of life of patients suffering from chronic hand eczema: an observational study. Dermatitis. 2013;24(4):166–9.Google Scholar
  14. Gola M, Milanesi N, D’Erme AM. Clinical evaluation and assessment of the therapeutic effectiveness of alitretinoin in a group of patients with chronic hand eczema refractory to topical steroid therapy. G Ital Dermatol Venereol. 2014;149(4):435–9.Google Scholar
  15. Ibler KS, Jemec GB, Diepgen TL, Gluud C, Lindschou Hansen J, Winkel P, Thomsen SF, Agner T. Skin care education and individual counselling versus treatment as usual in healthcare workers with hand eczema: randomised clinical trial. BMJ. 2012;345:e7822.PubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
  16. Lynde C, Cambazard F, Ruzicka T, Sebastian M, Brown TC, Maares J. Extended treatment with oral alitretinoin for patients with chronic hand eczema not fully responding to initial treatment. Clin Exp Dermatol. 2012;37(7):712–7.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  17. Molin S, Diepgen TL, Ruzicka T, Prinz JC. Diagnosing chronic hand eczema by an algorithm: a tool for classification in clinical practice. Clin Exp Dermatol. 2011;36(6):595–601.PubMedGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  • John English
    • 1
    Email author
  • Angelo Massimiliano D’Erme
    • 2
  • Massimo Gola
    • 3
  1. 1.Circle NHS Treatment CentreNottinghamUK
  2. 2.Unit of DermatologyUniversity of PisaPisaItaly
  3. 3.Division of Dermatology, Department of Surgery and Translational MedicineUniversity of FlorenceFlorenceItaly

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