Frequency of bathing in the management of atopic dermatitis: to bathe or not to bathe?

Authors: Koutroulis I (1,2) , Petrova K (2) , Kratimenos P (1,2) , Gaughan J (3)
(1) St Christopher's Hospital for Children (2) Drexel University College of Medicine (3) Temple University School of Medicine
Source: Clin Pediatr (Phila). 2014 Jun;53(7):677-81
DOI: 10.1177/0009922814526980 Publication date: 2014 Jun E-Publication date: March 14, 2014 Availability: abstract Copyright: © 2014, SAGE Publications
Language: English Countries: Not specified Location: Not specified Correspondence address: Ioannis Koutroulis,
Department of Emergency Medicine, St Christopher’s Hospital for Children, 3601 A Street, Philadelphia, PA 19134, USA.


Article abstract


Atopic dermatitis prevalence has increased in the developed world in recent decades, and effective management is vital to improve patients' quality of life.


A prospective, randomized, case-control study with a purposive sample of 28 children, aged 6 months to 10 years, diagnosed with atopic dermatitis. Participants received bathing instructions to be followed either daily or twice a week, with a follow-up duration of 2 weeks. Improvement of symptoms over time was measured using the SCORAD (SCORing Atopic Dermatitis) tool.


Overall symptoms decreased significantly at follow-up compared with baseline (difference = 5.0938, confidence interval = 0.2116 to 9.9759) but the differences in scores before and after interventions were not statistically significant between the groups (difference = -1.0937, confidence interval = -5.9759 to 3.7884).


The frequency of bathing did not seem to play an important role in the management of atopic dermatitis. Clinicians should focus on the need for adequate skin hydration.

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