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Health Researchers Warn Parents About Preservatives in Baby Wipes

Health experts are warning parents to beware of a preservative in baby wipes that can lead to itchy, scaly and red rashes.  We’re not just talking about your run-of-the-mill diaper rash either; the current rash associated with the preservative in baby wipes is acute dermatitis.  Acute dermatitis tends to rapidly develop and is characterized by blisters and swelling and can be extremely painful.  Health experts say that methylisothiazolinone or MI for short, is a popular preservative in many brands of baby wipes sold in the U.S. and is linked to acute dermatitis in babies.

Study Reveals Rash Clears Up After Discontinuation of Baby Wipes

A recent study published in the January edition of Pediatrics looked at the problem of MI and infant acute dermatitis.  The doctors tested for an allergy to MI in infants through a patch test, and found that within two days of parents discontinuing use of baby wipes containing MI, the acute dermatitis was resolved.  Many of these rashes had been going on for weeks and even months, say the researchers.  The six cases involved baby wipes by Cottonelle and Huggies, which both contain MI.

Kimberly-Clark Corp. to Stop Using MI in Baby Wipes

Kimberly-Clark Corp., the maker of both Cottonelle and Huggies baby wipes says that although it’s wipes are still safe for use, they realize that recent studies have raised concerns over the use of MI as a preservative.  Corporate representatives say that they have been testing preservatives other than MI over the past few years and that they will phase in the new MI-free wipes this year.  That should be a welcome relief for parents of babies allergic to MI and a definite resolution to painful acute dermatitis.

Headline Image Source: (CC BY-SA 3.0) ParentingPatch/Wikimedia Commons

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