ATTENTION PARENTS: Baby Wipes Causing Itchy, Scaly Rashes In Som - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

ATTENTION PARENTS: Baby Wipes Causing Itchy, Scaly Rashes In Some Babies

Posted: Updated:
NBCNEWS.COM - Baby wipes may cause some kids to develop itchy, scaly, red rashes, a new study shows.

Until now, there haven’t been any reports of allergic reactions to moist wipes in kids in the United States, researchers noted in the study published Monday in Pediatrics. But that may be because reactions have been mistaken for other conditions, such as eczema, impetigo, and psoriasis.

“I think it may be more common than people realize,” said study coauthor Dr. Mary Wu Chang, an associate professor of dermatology and pediatrics at the University of Connecticut School of Medicine.

Chang reported on six children who had developed mysterious rashes and came to the UConn Health Center for help.

The first, an 8-year-old girl, showed up with an angry red rash around her mouth and on her buttocks. She had initially been treated with antibiotics and steroids. Each time she was treated she improved somewhat, but the rash always came back.

When Chang looked at the child’s medical history she started to wonder if the girl might be having an allergic reaction. “What made me think of the wipes was that the rash was on her face and on her buttocks,” Chang said. “So I asked the mother what she was using to clean her.”

The mother told Chang she used baby wipes and then the researcher remembered a report she’d recently read about a Belgian man who had had a reaction to a chemical preservative known as methylisothiazolinone (MI) that’s found in baby wipes and other products.

Chang tested the girl for an allergy to MI and sure enough, the test came back positive. When the mom stopped using the wipes, the rashes cleared up.

Over the next 22 months five other children showed up at the UConn center with the same types of rashes, all of whom cleared up as soon as parents stopped using the baby wipes.

Chang isn’t ready to tell parents to eschew wipes entirely. “They’re so convenient,” she said. “I have three kids, so I know how hard it is to do the changes, especially when you’re traveling. But maybe when you’re at home, it would be better to use a gentle cleanser and water. That way you minimize exposure.”

Dr. Robin Gehris said she has been seeing more and more kids with reactions to the wipes. It’s possible, she said, that this is because manufacturers have bumped up the amount of MI used in wipes 25-fold.

“I think this is a really important issue,” said Gehris, a clinical associate professor of dermatology and chief of pediatric dermatologic surgery at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center. “But when you tell a patient they shouldn’t use moist wipes they act like you have two heads. It’s hard for people to imagine when something called hypoallergenic [could contain] things that could cause a problem.”

Gehris is also concerned that with the frequent use of wipes in babies, we might be sensitizing a whole generation to MI, which is rather ubiquitous, popping up in such items as household products, make-up, lotions and shampoos.

Gehris said it would be best when parents aren’t traveling to avoid wipes altogether. “At home you can get a big role of white paper towels. Run the paper towel under water when you’re ready to use it and then throw it away. These chemicals are added to products that are stored moist. If you pick something that is not moist when it’s stored that might circumvent the problem.” 

  • Most Popular StoriesMost Popular StoriesMore>>

  • VIRAL VIDEO: Holy Moly! This girl is definitely NOT afraid of spiders!

    VIRAL VIDEO: Holy Moly! This girl is definitely NOT afraid of spiders!

    Monday, September 1 2014 12:00 PM EDT2014-09-01 16:00:12 GMT
    KHQ.COM - You don't even know what this girl is about to do to prove she is definitely NOT afraid of spiders! Is she crazy or just fearless? Would you do this for $500? $1,000? $20,000? >>>WATCH>>>>>
    KHQ.COM - You don't even know what this girl is about to do to prove she is definitely NOT afraid of spiders! Is she crazy or just fearless? Would you do this for $500? $1,000? $20,000? >>>WATCH>>>>>
  • One person dead after hit & run in Spokane Valley

    One person dead after hit & run in Spokane Valley

    Tuesday, September 2 2014 1:02 PM EDT2014-09-02 17:02:36 GMT
    KHQ.COM - One person is dead after a hit and run near I-90 Park Rd. in Spokane Valley. It happened around 1:30 am on Tuesday. At this point police do not have a suspect description but are asking for anyone who may have witnessed the incident to call Crime Check at 509-456-2233.>>
    KHQ.COM - One person is dead after a hit and run near I-90 Park Rd. in Spokane Valley. It happened around 1:30 am on Tuesday. At this point police do not have a suspect description but are asking for anyone who may have witnessed the incident to call Crime Check at 509-456-2233.>>
  • TRENDING: Jennifer Lawrence requests nude pics investigation

    TRENDING: Jennifer Lawrence requests nude pics investigation

    Monday, September 1 2014 3:50 PM EDT2014-09-01 19:50:31 GMT
    LOS ANGELES (AP) - A publicist for Jennifer Lawrence says the actress has contacted authorities after nude photos of her were apparently stolen and posted online. Intimate images of the Oscar winning actress began appearing online on Sunday and nude images purported to be of other female celebrities were also being circulated online.>>
    LOS ANGELES (AP) - A publicist for Jennifer Lawrence says the actress has contacted authorities after nude photos of her were apparently stolen and posted online. Intimate images of the Oscar winning actress began appearing online on Sunday and nude images purported to be of other female celebrities were also being circulated online.
    >>
  • Top Stories from KHQTop StoriesMore>>

  • One person dead after hit & run in Spokane Valley

    One person dead after hit & run in Spokane Valley

    Tuesday, September 2 2014 1:02 PM EDT2014-09-02 17:02:36 GMT
    KHQ.COM - One person is dead after a hit and run near I-90 Park Rd. in Spokane Valley. It happened around 1:30 am on Tuesday. At this point police do not have a suspect description but are asking for anyone who may have witnessed the incident to call Crime Check at 509-456-2233.>>
    KHQ.COM - One person is dead after a hit and run near I-90 Park Rd. in Spokane Valley. It happened around 1:30 am on Tuesday. At this point police do not have a suspect description but are asking for anyone who may have witnessed the incident to call Crime Check at 509-456-2233.>>
  • Action Cam: Liquid Nitrogen Ice Cream At 'The Scoop!'

    Action Cam: Liquid Nitrogen Ice Cream At 'The Scoop!'

    Tuesday, September 2 2014 12:22 PM EDT2014-09-02 16:22:00 GMT
    KHQ.COM - This morning Jennifer Davis, owner of "The Scoop" ice cream shop, showed Matt Rogers how she makes ice cream with liquid nitrogen! MORE INFO: http://www.thescoopspokane.com/>>
    KHQ.COM - This morning Jennifer Davis, owner of "The Scoop" ice cream shop, showed Matt Rogers how she makes ice cream with liquid nitrogen! MORE INFO: http://www.thescoopspokane.com/>>
  • PHOTOS: Share your back-to-school pics!

    PHOTOS: Share your back-to-school pics!

    Tuesday, September 2 2014 12:18 PM EDT2014-09-02 16:18:59 GMT
    KHQ.COM - School is starting! Everyone knows the drill right? Before you can run out the door and jump on the bus, mom always has to snag a picture to remember her little baby growing up through the years! We want to see those photos! Whether they are from this year, last year or 50 years ago, send us the photos of your first day of school!>>
    KHQ.COM - School is starting! Everyone knows the drill right? Before you can run out the door and jump on the bus, mom always has to snag a picture to remember her little baby growing up through the years! We want to see those photos! Whether they are from this year, last year or 50 years ago, send us the photos of your first day of school!>>