Wet Wraps Cut Need For Drugs In Kids With Eczema

Wet wrap therapy can keep itchy skin moist and improve the effectiveness of topical medicine in patients suffering from eczema.



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Video Transcript

Good job Lucy!

There was a time Heather Karazim couldn't imagine her daughter Lucy on a hot summer day playing T-ball. Shortly after Lucy was born, she developed eczema, a painful itchy rash on her face, arms, and legs that made her miserable. She'd scratch until she bled and then you worry about infection. Heather saw several different doctors who put Lucy on more and more medications including powerful steroids. Though they made Heather uneasy, they did work. But then as soon as they stop because they have concerns about the side effects of the medication, the disease comes back.

So Dr. Mark Boguniewicz helps study a safer, simpler approach. At National Jewish Health in Denver experts evaluated a process known as wet wrap therapy. After soaking in a tub, lotions or mild medications were put on a child's enflamed skin while still damp. Then children were covered by a wet layer of clothing to seal in the moisture followed by a dry layer. Over roughly four days or so you see this dramatic improvement. In fact, the study found that symptoms improved by more than 70% on average, kids were still healthy a month later, and infections were held in check all without using the medications many doctors have come to rely on. We got to improve that patient's skin barrier and when we do, we can do it without using antibiotics.

Heather and Lucy spent two weeks in Denver learning wet wrap therapy and two years later still use it back home in Indianapolis to keep Lucy itch free.

You can't just do it once, I mean it's you know, doing it a few times depending on how bad the skin is, but I mean, I'm a believer.

At National Jewish Health in Denver this is Clark Powell reporting.


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