Conditions: Bullous Disease

What is bullous disease?

Some forms of Bullous Disease are acute and short-lived like poison ivy dermatitis. Other forms of Bullous Disease are more chronic and long lasting such as Bullous Pemphigoid Bullous Pemphigoid is a rare and chronic autoimmune disorder that typically affects the elderly. The bullae, a type of blister, form between the dermis and the epidermis and usually subside within a few months up to a few years.

What if bullous diseases goes untreated?

Although typically maddeningly itchy, this condition can persist for years if not properly treated. The patient can experience spontaneous breakouts and remissions during this time, and in rare cases, potentially fatal complications such as pneumonia may develop. Untreated Bullous Pemphigoid can lead to skin or internal infections and scarring. Dermatology Associates of Seattle offer both treatments and relief for all forms of Bullous Disease.

How is bullous pemphigoid treated?

Using a blood test and skin biopsy, your dermatologist will confirm your condition. Although there is no known cure for bullous pemphigoid, there are a variety of treatment options available.


A widely used treatment option is Prednisone, prescribed in pill form or as an injection. Side effects of Prednisone can include diabetes, high blood pressure, and cataracts. Proper dosage and monitoring are essential. To limit side effects further, sometimes a topical ointment will be prescribed in place of injection or pill.

Inflammation Medications:

Anti-inflammatory medication by itself, or paired with corticosteroids, can help reduce the symptoms of bullous pemphigoid. Your dermatologist may prescribe vitamins and antibiotics such as tetracycline as well.

Immune System Suppressants:

Since bullous pemphigoid is an autoimmune disorder, suppression of the immune system through medications such as azathioprine (Imuran, Azan or CellCept) can aid in treatment by blocking your body's production of white blood cells. In a healthy person, white blood cells fight disease, but in a patient suffering from bullous pemphigoid, the white blood cells attack the skin.

Bullous Disease treatment and relief:

Contact us to make an appointment with one of our board-certified dermatologists. Once you have a complete and accurate diagnosis, we will build a personalized and realistic treatment plan for your case. At Dermatology Associates of Seattle, we believe in honest information, treatment, and care for the life of your skin. With a full-service clinic, research center, and laser facility located at our downtown clinic, we’re the leader in comprehensive skin care and treatment in the Pacific Northwest. Call (206) 267-2100 to make an appointment today.

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