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Pediatr Dermatol. 2012 May-Jun;29(3):289-96. doi: 10.1111/j.1525-1470.2011.01661.x. Epub 2011 Dec 9.

Treatment outcomes of secondarily impetiginized pediatric atopic dermatitis lesions and the role of oral antibiotics.

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  • 1Department of Dermatology, Indiana University School of Medicine, 550 N. University Blvd., suite 3240, Indianapolis, IN 46202, Indiana, USA. jtravers@iupui.edu

Abstract

Patients with atopic dermatitis (AD) are predisposed to infection with Staphylococcus aureus, which worsens their skin disease; it has been postulated that the lack of antimicrobial peptides due to aberrant allergic inflammation in skin with AD could mediate this enhanced bacterial susceptibility. We sought to characterize the amounts of S. aureus and biological products found in infected AD lesions and whether treatment with topical corticosteroids and oral cephalexin as the only antimicrobial improved outcomes. Fifty-nine children with clinically and S. aureus-positive impetiginized lesions of AD were enrolled in this study. A lesion was graded clinically using the Eczema Area and Severity Index, and wash fluid was obtained from the lesion for quantitative bacterial culture and antibiotic sensitivities and measurement of bacterial products and cytokines. Subjects were re-evaluated 2 weeks after treatment. Improvement in the clinical and inflammatory characteristics of impetiginized lesions were noted, even in the 15% of lesions infected with Methicillin-resistant S. aureus (MRSA). In a subgroup of subjects whose lesions did not contain S. aureus 2 weeks after initiating treatment, beta-defensin levels were higher at both visits than in normal skin. Treatment of uncomplicated impetiginized pediatric AD with topical corticosteroids and cephalexin results in significant clinical improvement, even in subjects infected with MRSA. We propose that the inhibition of abnormal inflammation by the treatment regimen, resulting in the high levels of defensins, is involved in the improvement of AD and that systemic antibiotics do not appear to be necessary in secondary impetiginized AD.

© 2011 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

PMID:
22150395
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PMCID:
PMC3310266
Free PMC Article
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