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Clinical Pearl Wednesday #93

Illumination Imagination Creativity  - 愚木混株CDD20 / Pixabay

These days with vigorous hand washing and hand sanitizer application, hand dermatitis is common.

Patients may suffer with this condition year-round, or most notably during the winter months when the air is dry and hot water tends to be used for cleansing. It is always best to determine the cause and minimize exposure to it while keeping the water temperature down, practicing good skin care with moisturizers, and utilizing topical medications when needed.

Sometimes patients with hand dermatitis suffer from painful cracks and fissures near or around the fingertips or on the palms. Not only do they increase the risk for infection, they are very uncomfortable and take some time to heal. In these cases, you can recommend sealing the crack with super glue. Yes, that’s right, super glue. You can recommend that the patient buy a new tube specifically for this use.

Have the patient prepare by setting up a hair dryer and a gauze or paper towel nearby to wipe up any excess. Instruct the patient to wash and dry their hands. Then they can slowly apply the glue to the cracked area and then use the hair dryer on the lowest setting to set it. Repeat with the remaining cracks.

Depending on the patient’s daily activities, this can provide relief for up to twenty-four hours and may be repeated as needed until the cracks heal!

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