- In this randomized controlled trial, daily emollient use seemed to have no preventive power against eczema in high-risk infants and may be tied to increased skin infection risk.
Why this matters
- These authors say that the results are unexpected, given “strong signal” in pilot studies.
- At age 2 years, eczema was diagnosed in:
- 23% of infants in the emollient group.
- 25% of infants in the control group.
- Adjusted relative risk: 0.95 (95% CI, 0.78-1.16).
- Washing practices were similar across groups.
- 15% in the emollient group developed skin infections vs 11% in the control group.
- These infections included impetigo and unspecified infections.
- Multicenter, randomized controlled parallel-group trial, 12 UK hospitals and 4 primary care sites with 1394 infants randomly allocated to emollient (n=693) or control (n=701) groups.
- Funding: National Institute for Health Research Health Technology Assessment.
- Results for an oral food challenge that was also included were difficult to analyze because of low participation.