ComplicationsBy Mayo Clinic staff
Prolonged itching and scratching may increase the intensity of the itch, possibly leading to neurodermatitis (lichen simplex chronicus). Neurodermatitis is a condition in which an area of skin that's frequently scratched becomes thick and leathery. The patches can be raw, red or darker than the rest of your skin. Persistent scratching can also lead to a bacterial skin infection and permanent scars or changes in skin color.
- Cassano N, et al. Chronic pruritus in the absence of specific skin disease. American Journal of Clinical Dermatology. 2010;11:399.
- Yosipovitch G, et al. Pathophysiology and clinical aspects of pruritus: Introduction. In: Wolf K, et al. Fitzpatrick's Dermatology in General Medicine. 7th ed. New York, N.Y.: The McGraw-Hill Companies. 2008. http://www.accessmedicine.com/content.aspx?aID=2960463&searchStr=pruritus#2960463. Accessed Oct. 26, 2010.
- Pruritus. American Academy of Dermatology. http://www.aad.org/public/publications/pamphlets/common_pruritus.html. Accessed Oct. 26, 2010.
- Fazio SB. Pruritus. http://www.uptodate.com/home/index.html. Accessed Oct. 26, 2010.
- Metz M, et al. Chronic pruritus - Pathogenesis, clinical aspects and treatment. Journal of the European Academy of Dermatology and Venereology. 2010;24:1249.
- Berger TG. Dermatologic disorders. In: McPhee SJ, et al. Current Medical Diagnosis and Treatment. 50th ed. New York, N.Y.: The McGraw-Hill Companies. 2011. http://www.accessmedicine.com/content.aspx?aID=747&searchStr=pruritus#1682. Accessed Oct. 26, 2010.
- Gibson LE (expert opinion). Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. Nov. 8, 2010.
- Benzocaine topical products: Sprays, gels and liquids — risk of methemoglobinemia. U.S. Food and Drug Administration. http://www.fda.gov/Safety/MedWatch/SafetyInformation/SafetyAlertsforHumanMedicalProducts/ucm250264.htm. Accessed Apr. 8, 2011.