Since there is no cure for ichthyosis, treatment consists of managing the symptoms. Most treatment is aimed at keeping the skin moist. In severe cases, medication may be prescribed. For the acquired form, treatment that lessens the severity of the underlying noninherited condition may also help lessen the symptoms of the associated ichthyosis.
Many types of moisturizing ointments, lotions, and creams are used to lessen or alleviate symptoms of ichthyosis. These include:
- Petroleum jelly
- Mineral oil
- Creams, lotions, and ointments containing vitamin A
- A large variety of nonprescription, unscented moisturizers
For ichthyosis that causes scaling:
- Solutions or creams with lactic or salicylic acid or urea may help.
- In some cases, doctors may suggest wrapping affected areas with a plastic or cellophane "bandage" after applying moisturizing agent. Such bandages should not be used on children.
In severe cases, drugs are sometimes prescribed, including:
- Etretinate and isotretinoin —These medications are retinoids, which are derivatives of vitamin A; excess amounts of vitamin A can be harmful.
- Antibiotics (if the skin becomes infected)
- Disinfecting soaps (eg, chlorhexidine)
Please be aware that this information is provided to supplement the care provided by your physician. It is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. CALL YOUR HEALTHCARE PROVIDER IMMEDIATELY IF YOU THINK YOU MAY HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Copyright © 2023 EBSCO Publishing All rights reserved.