When is surgical intervention indicated in the treatment of diaper dermatitis?

Updated: Oct 16, 2020
  • Author: Ruchir Agrawal, MD; Chief Editor: Dirk M Elston, MD  more...
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Answer

Generally, no surgical intervention is needed. However, if a diagnosis other than diaper dermatitis is suspected from the presentation or the lack of response to traditional treatment, a biopsy may be indicated.

In rare incidents of diaper dermatitis, a break in the skin can lead to the inoculation of group A beta hemolytic streptococci (GABHS) or other aerobic and anaerobic organisms, causing necrotizing fascitis (NF). Recognition of this condition is extremely important because disease tends to progress quickly through the fascial plane. Initially, the skin may appear erythematous and edematous, but crepitus, cutaneous ulceration, necrosis, bullae, and abscesses soon develop. Early recognition, empirical treatment with antibiotics, and surgical debridement is essential for lower morbidity and mortality.


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