Eczema is a common condition that causes the skin to become inflamed and itchy. It is typically a long-lasting condition that may be accompanied by hay fever or asthma. Eczema can affect people of any age and it can develop on any part of the body, but it most commonly appears on the arms or knees. The exact cause of eczema is not known, but it’s likely due to a combination of dry, irritated skin with a malfunction in the body’s immune system. Eczema can appear as red, brown or gray colored patches, small bumps that leak fluid when scratched, or thickened skin that appears scaly and cracked. Patients commonly experience itchiness, discomfort and sensitive skin that bleeds when scratched. Treatments for eczema may include topical medication, phototherapy (light therapy), antibiotics, oral antihistamines and systemic therapies.