Preparing for your appointment

You're likely to start by seeing your family doctor. He or she may refer you to a doctor who specializes in skin disorders (dermatologist). Here's some information to help you get ready for your appointment.

What you can do

Before your appointment, you may want to write a list that answers the following questions:

  • Have you experienced this problem in the past?
  • Do you have allergies to certain substances such as rubber, glues, fragrances or nickel?
  • Have your stress levels worsened recently?
  • What medications and supplements do you take regularly?
  • Are you exposed to certain metals or chemicals in the work setting or through hobbies?

What to expect from your doctor

Your doctor is likely to ask you a number of questions, such as:

  • When did you first begin experiencing symptoms?
  • Have your symptoms been continuous or occasional?
  • How severe are your symptoms?
  • What, if anything, seems to improve your symptoms?
  • What, if anything, appears to worsen your symptoms?
  • Are you exposed to chemicals or metals in the work setting or through a hobby?
April 30, 2016
  1. Wolff K, et al. Eczema/Dermatitis. In: Fitzpatrick's Color Atlas and Synopsis of Clinical Dermatology. 7th ed. New York, N.Y.: The McGraw-Hill Companies; 2013. Accessed Feb. 24, 2016.
  2. Adams DR, et al. Acute palmoplantar eczema (dyshidrotic eczema). Accessed Feb. 24, 2016.
  3. Hand and foot dermatitis. Merck Manuals Professional Edition. Accessed March 4, 2016.
  4. Goldsmith LA, et al., eds. Vesicular palmoplantar eczema. In: Fitzpatrick's Dermatology in General Medicine. 8th ed. New York, N.Y.: The McGraw-Hill Companies; 2012. Accessed March 4, 2016.
  5. Gibson LE (expert opinion). Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. March 17, 2016.