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Xeroderma causes the skin to be rough, itchy, flaky, or scaly. The position of these dry spots varies from individual to individual. It is a widespread disorder that affects people of all ages.

Cold or dry weather, sun damage, harsh soaps, and overbathing are all causes of dry skin, also known as xerosis or dry skin.

You can do a lot to improve dry skin, such as moisturizing and using sunscreen all year. To find a strategy that works for you, experiment with different products and skin care routines.


Xeroderma is an inherited autosomal recessive illness. This indicates that to develop a disease or trait, you must have two copies of a defective gene. The illness is passed down from both your mother and father. Because the defective gene is uncommon, the chances of both parents possessing it are improbable. As a result, while it is possible, it is improbable that someone with the illness will pass it on to the next generation.

UV light from the sun damages the genetic material (DNA) in skin cells.

In most cases, the body will restore the harm – However, the body does not repair the harm in those with xeroderma, as a result, the skin thins, and patches of variable color emerge (splotchy pigmentation).


Xeroderma is frequently transitory or seasonal — you may only get it in the winter, for example — or it may require long-term treatment. Dry skin signs and symptoms may differ depending on age, health status, skin tone, living environment, and exposure to sun. They are as symptom xeroderma follows:

  • A sensation of skin constriction
  • Skin that is rough to the touch and appears harsh
  • Itchiness
  • Skin flaking from mild to severe, resulting in an ashy appearance on dry brown and black skin.
  • Scaling or peeling ranging from mild to severe
  • The leg has a cracked “dry riverbed” appearance.
  • Small lines or cracks
  • Skin that is reddish on white skin and grayish on brown and black skin
  • Deep blendable cracks


The health care specialist will perform a physical exam, with specific focus paid to the skin and eyes. The specialist will also inquire about any xeroderma family history.

  • Skin biopsy, in which skin cells are analyzed in a laboratory
  • DNA testing for the faulty gene is also possible.
  • Before delivery, the following tests can be used to help xeroderma diagnose the condition in a baby
  • Amniocentesis
  • Chorionic villus sample
  • Amniotic cell culture


People suffering from xeroderma require complete sun protection. Even light emitted by windows or fluorescent lamps can be hazardous.

  • Protective clothes must be worn when out in the sun.
  • Use the highest SPF sunscreen to protect your skin and eyes from the sun.
  • Wear long-sleeved shirts and long pants, as well as UVA and UVB-blocking sunglasses.
  • Teach your youngster to always wear sunglasses when they are outside.

Your provider may prescribe drugs, such as retinoid cream, to apply to the skin to prevent skin cancer. If skin cancer develops, it will be removed through surgery or other means.

When To See A Doctor

Most xeroderma conditions react effectively to lifestyle changes and home cures. You should see your primary care physician or a dermatologist if you have any of the following symptoms.

  • You’ve attempted self-care measures, but your signs and symptoms continue
  • Your skin becomes irritated or painful
  • As a side effect of cancer therapy, you get dry, thick skin
  • Your condition causes you to lose sleep or become distracted from your regular routines
  • You have open sores or infections caused by itching
  • You have extensive regions of scaly or peeling skin.


This information is intended for educational purposes only and should not be considered a substitute for professional medical advice. If you have concerns about Xeroderma or any other medical condition, please see a doctor for an accurate diagnosis and personalized treatment suggestions.