Treatment

Patients should be told that treatment is not expected to result in a cure. Treatment is aimed at relieving signs and symptoms of disease; the eruption will return after treatment ceases. Shampoos can be used on the scalp and other hair-bearing areas. These include shampoos containing zinc pyrithione (Head and Shoulders), selenium sulfide (Selsun or extra-strength Head and Shoulders), salicylic acid (Neutrogena T-Sal), or tar preparations (Neutrogena T-Gel). Nizoral shampoo can be effective as well and is now available over-the-counter. Seborrheic dermatitis is very responsive to low-potency corticosteroids. Hydrocortisone 1% cream can be used in mild cases, while hydrocortisone 2.5% cream or desonide (DesOwen) cream or lotion may be required initially in more severe cases. If these initial treatment options fail, the patient should be instructed to follow up with a dermatologist.

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