Peter Lio, MD: New and Emerging Therapies for the Management of Itch

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In this episode of Derm Discussions, Peter Lio, MD, discusses the difficulties treating itch as well as alternative—and perhaps surprising—therapeutic options.

How should a dermatologist treat itch? The answer certainly is not a straightforward one.

One thing is for sure. The underlying causes behind itch—or pruritis—are numerous. A dermatological condition like atopic dermatitis can produce symptoms that may lead to irritation. Stress or anxiety may be the culprit. Or perhaps it could be a nerve disorder. Sometimes the cause may not be so obvious.

Identifying the cause is essential to prescribing the proper treatment. However, the appropriate therapy may not always be successful, and that can be a source of frustration for both dermatologist and patient.

After all, severe itch may significantly impact quality of life, especially if the sensation becomes debilitating.

In this episode of Derm Discussions, Peter Lio, MD, Clinical Assistant Professor of Dermatology & Pediatrics, Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine, spoke with Brad Glick, DO, FAAD, about the various causes leading to itch. He offered some insight into treatment options for patients suffering from such a challenging-to-treat sensation or symptom.

Lio also discussed some of the typical therapies that may be used to address acute and chronic itch, but he also touched on the potential of some alternative therapeutic options—such as acupuncture, cannabinoids, and hypnosis.