New treatment for seborrheic dermatitis

Seborrheic dermatitis is a common skin condition that I see in my practice weekly. For most people it’s a nuisance that shows up as red, peeling skin around the nose, on the eyebrows and on the scalp. The most common treatment for the face is topical steroids. My concern with this treatment is that over time it thins the skin, and can cause broken blood vessels and stretch marks. Topical antifungals are also used, but they don’t always work. So I decided to try a novel approach. Elidel cream (pimecrolimus) is used for eczema but it has very few known side effects, other than occasional burning. One study found that Elidel was slower to work than other treatments, but more effective for seborrheic dermatitis and had longer-lasting results. I have started using it on some patients, with very good results.