der·​ma·​ti·​tis | \ ˌdər-mə-ˈtī-təs How to pronounce dermatitis (audio) \
plural dermatitides\ ˌdər-​mə-​ˈti-​tə-​ˌdēz How to pronounce dermatitides (audio) \ or dermatitises

Definition of dermatitis

: inflammation of the skin

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Did You Know?

Dermatitis usually appears as a rash, and may cause itching, blisters, swelling, and often scabbing and scaling. It often marks an allergic reaction of some kind. Contact dermatitis is caused by something (often a chemical) touching the skin. Atopic dermatitis usually affects the insides of the elbows, the backs of the knees, and the face; generally resulting from an inherited sensitivity, it's often triggered by inhaling something. Eczema, psoriasis, and dandruff are all forms of dermatitis. Even in the worst cases, dermatitis isn't infectious and doesn't produce serious health consequences.

Examples of dermatitis in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web This shampoo, which Paul Cellura, MD, dermatologist at Tribeca Skin Center in New York City likes, relies on one percent coal tar to ease flaking and scalp irritation associated with seborrheic dermatitis, dandruff and scalp psoriasis. Gideon Grudo, NBC News, "The most purchased beauty products we covered this holiday season," 29 Dec. 2019 The family has complained of chest pain, rhinitis, fatigue, headaches, rashes, dermatitis, vomiting and more. USA TODAY, "Duck seeking duck, forest ornaments, Alice Cooper’s Christmas Pudding: News from around our 50 states," 13 Dec. 2019 That is, in essence, the social media story of atopic dermatitis. Virginia Savova, STAT, "Creating a Facebook for cell communication can help treat disease," 6 Dec. 2019 Haygood has severe atopic dermatitis, more commonly known as eczema. CBS News, "Teens with skin conditions model dresses that show more than what meets the eye," 11 Oct. 2019 Wang, 27, has been dealing with perioral dermatitis for most of 2019, after she was incorrectly prescribed topical steroids. Julie Mazziotta,, "CBS Miami’s Frances Wang Says Her Skin Is ‘Healing’ After Taking Time Off," 5 Nov. 2019 The specific condition Wang was diagnosed with was perioral dermatitis, which has caused itchy and burning red bumps around her mouth. Austen Erblat,, "CBS Miami reporter Frances Wang returning to TV amid ongoing battle with skin condition," 5 Nov. 2019 The original description of the atopic march included only atopic dermatitis, asthma and allergic rhinitis. Scientific American, "Researchers Optimistic About Breaking Stride Of The Atopic March," 26 Aug. 2019 In fact, there are reports of people developing contact dermatitis from using centella asiatica, Dr. Rieder points out. Sarah Jacoby, SELF, "What Can Centella Asiatica Really Do for Red, Dry, Sensitive Skin?," 31 May 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'dermatitis.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of dermatitis

1876, in the meaning defined above

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Time Traveler for dermatitis

Time Traveler

The first known use of dermatitis was in 1876

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Statistics for dermatitis

Last Updated

11 Jan 2020

Cite this Entry

“Dermatitis.” The Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., Accessed 21 January 2020.

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More Definitions for dermatitis


How to pronounce dermatitis (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of dermatitis

medical : a disease in which the skin becomes red, swollen, and sore


der·​ma·​ti·​tis | \ ˌdər-mə-ˈtīt-əs How to pronounce dermatitis (audio) \
plural dermatitises or dermatitides\ -​ˈtit-​ə-​ˌdēz How to pronounce dermatitides (audio) \

Medical Definition of dermatitis

: inflammation of the skin

called also dermitis

Other Words from dermatitis

dermatitic \ -​ˈtit-​ik How to pronounce dermatitic (audio) \ adjective

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More from Merriam-Webster on dermatitis

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with dermatitis

Nglish: Translation of dermatitis for Spanish Speakers Encyclopedia article about dermatitis

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