Spongiotic Dermatitis

Spongiotic dermatitis is a reaction pattern of dermatitis. It is the condition in which the top layer of skin ie epidermis containing spongiotic dermatitis is often filled with fluid ( edema). It is a severe type of eczematic condition that affects the top layer of the skin.

Symptoms of Spongiotic Dermatitis:

Following are the symptoms of spongiotic dermatitis:

  • Itching especially at night.
  • Dry scaly skin.
  • Rashes.
  • Inflammed skin.
  • Blisters ie red or grey patches on the skin.
  • Lesions on the skin which may be filled with fluid.
  • Dandruff.
  • This spongiosis can occur on the chest, buttocks, or stomach.

Factors affecting Spongiotic Dermatitis:

  • Foods like milk, eggs, fish, wheat, peanuts, soybeans.
  • Chemicals.
  • Cosmetics.
  • Certain Medicines.
  • Stress.
  • Fungus.
  • Weather changes.
  • Insect bite.
  • Hormones changes.
  • Sweating.
  • Certain metals like nickel.
  • Dry skin.
  • Tobacco smoke.
  • Pollution.
  • In certain diseases, a person can become prone to spongiosis, like Parkinson’s’ disease, AIDS, or congestive heart failure.
  • If your skin is very sensitive then certain soaps can also create spongiosis dermatitis.


During the biopsy process, the doctor examines the skin to know more about the underlying disease. In this process, the doctor will remove skin samples from the upper layer of the skin. There are three types of skin biopsies:

1 Punch Biopsy:

The doctor will take one circular tool to remove skin samples of skin along with layers of skin.


2: Excisional biopsy:

Doctore will use a knife-like tool called a scalpel to remove the upper area of skin with other layers of skin.

3: Shave biopsy:

Doctor will use razor like tool to remove epidermis , dermis etc.

A skin biopsy may have certain risks including Scarring, blood coming out of the wound, skin infection, etc.

If you have some bleeding disorder, taking blood-thinning medicines including aspirin, warfarin, or heparin, or you have diabetes then tell your doctor about all these conditions so that your doctor may prescribe biopsy accordingly.

During biopsy for spongiotic dermatitis, you may be asked to undress or expose the affected area, then the doctor or nurse will clean the affected area. After cleaning the doctor will mark the wound with a surgical marker and will use a local anesthetic to numb to an area with a thin needle. You will feel a numbing and burning sensation for a few seconds and during the autopsy, you will not feel any pain.

For shaved biopsy since the wound is smaller so it will cause only bleeding which can be reduced by applying pressure. But for punch biopsy wound is not smaller so some medicines along with applying pressure are necessary to recover and repair the wound.

The whole process will take only 15 minutes.

Take care of your wound according to the instructions of the doctor after the biopsy. Your doctor will then send the sample to the laboratory for further detailed information about the disease.

The biopsy process can produce some pink scars on the skin which will fade out and turn to white or brown and ultimately will further fade out.

Patch Test:

During a patch test, your doctor will use different allergens and will place these substances on discs and then place these discs on your back. Allergens that produce dermatitis will react to the body and cause inflammation and redness. The doctor can then identify which allergens are responsible for dermatitis.

For patch tests, you should also bring anything that is causing allergy for using many years. Avoid direct sunlight days before the test and during the test as ultraviolet light in sunlight may cure inflammation caused by spongiotic dermatitis. Keep the affected area dry. Don’t apply any oil or cream on your back until the final report. Tell your doctor if you are taking any medicines to cure this disease.

Treatment for spongiotic dermatitis:

  • Apply Corticosteroid for example 1% hydrocortisone cream on the affected area once or twice. Hydrocortisone cream is used to treat swelling, itching, and irritation. This is a mild product and can be purchased over the counter from pharmacies. You can also use Calamine lotion to soothe and reduce irritation around the affected area. Apply these creams efore applying moisturizers.
  • Avoid triggers.
  • Use hypollerggenic soaps if your skin is too sensitive.
  • You can take bleach baths.
  • Dont scratch the affected area.
  • Extreme temperatures can make your skin dry. Use a humidifier so that it keeps the air moist and your skin will not dry. Use moisturizers as when your skin is dry it is more affected by the disease. Apply moisturizer twice a day after the shower. Don’t use perfumed moisturizers. Use moisturizers in the form of creams or ointments.
  • Use antihistamines to cure allergic reaction.
  • Use probiotics such as yogurt in your food items.
  • If stress is the cause of worsening your spongiotic dermatitis then use relaxation techniques such as breathing exercises or mindfulness.
  • Drink plenty of water to keep yourself hydrated.
  • Your doctor can recommend you to use shampoos with selenium, zinc pyrithione, or ketoconazole if you have seborrheic dermatitis. In this condition, you have to wash your hair quite frequently.
  • Itching is produced when histamine is released in your blood in spongiosis dermatitis. This histamine is released as some allergens enter the body. If you feel itching that is out of control, you can put a cold compress on the affected area for 10 to 15 minutes and leave a 1-hour gap in applying this again. Cold temperature numbs the affected area and decreases swelling and inflammation.
  • If itching or swelling or inflammation is not stopped by applying topical corticosteroid, your doctor can recommend oral corticosteroids such as prednisolone to reduce the symptoms. Don’t use these steroids on your own as these can have serious side effects when used for the long term. Only your doctor will prescribe these medications.
  • When allergens like dust and pollen enter the body, the body fights back and releases a substance known as histamine. This histamine produces skin flare-ups, itchy eyes, inflammation, and swelling. Antihistamine is a drug to treat the reaction of allergens in spongiotic dermatitis. These are oral medicines that block histamine.
  • Sedation caused by some antihistamines relieves from scratching. There are two types of antihistamines. First-generation histamines and second-generation histamines. First-generation histamines include Benadryl and chlorpheniramine that have an effect on the mind and can have sedative properties. Second-generation antihistamines are not sedative and include Loratadine and Cetirizine. Second-generation antihistamines are less effective as compared to first-generation medications but can have some side effects like you can not drive, you may have difficulty thinking, etc.
  • Phototherapy also is known as light therapy refers to using ultraviolet light to reduce skin inflammation and itching on skin. Natural sunlight also has ultraviolet light but artificial UV light is best for the treatment of spongiotic dermatitis. It is not recommended for children under the age of 12. There are three types of ultraviolet lights, Broadband UVB, UVA, and Narrowband UVB. UVA ultraviolet light is used in combination with some medicines. Using this method is not completely risk-free as there are chances of developing skin cancer and premature aging and skin damage. This process is carefully supervised by dermatologists and proper precautions are taken. Consult your dermatologist to take this option as treatment of this disease.
  • If your wound becomes severe and gets infected such as feeling pus swelling, redness, or warmth in the wound, talk to your doctor. He or she may prescribe antibiotics to treat the affected area. These antibiotics may include, doxycycline, clindamycin, erythromycin or penicillin, etc.
  • last IF no other treatment is working, use calcineurin inhibitor cream including tacrolimus and pimecrolimus. These creams repair the skin. These medicines directly affect the immune system hence can have some serious side effects like very rare chances to develop certain cancers. Always use these medicines with the consultation of a doctor.

Spongiotic dermatitis is not a major skin disease. Home remedies and medicines can easily cure this disease. This is not a contagious disease. Talk to your doctor if you feel much distress and sleeplessness due to itching.

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