Infantile acropustulosis revisited: History of scabies and response to topical corticosteroids

Anthony J. Mancini*, Ilona J. Frieden, Amy S. Paller

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

41 Scopus citations


Infantile acropustulosis (IA) is a condition of young children characterized by recurrent episodes of pruritic vesicles and pustules in an acral distribution. Several reports describe patients with scabies infestation prior to the diagnosis of IA, although the relationship between the two remains unclear. Furthermore, optimal therapy is controversial. We reviewed the history of scabies and response to therapy in 21 patients diagnosed with IA at two institutions between 1.983 and 1997. A history of prior treatment for scabies was noted in 14 patients, although only two had mites, feces, or ova detected on microscopic examination for diagnostic verification. All patients were treated with topical corticosteroids (4 with class I, 12 with class II, 3 with class III, 1 with class IV, and I with class VI). All 18 patients who returned for follow-up experienced significant improvement or cleared completely with treatment. There were no observed cutaneous or systemic side effects from corticosteroid therapy. We conclude that a history of preceding scabies is common in patients with IA, but often this diagnosis is made without microscopic confirmation. We also demonstrate that mid- to high-potency topical corticosteroids are a safe and effective first-line therapy for patients with IA.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)337-341
Number of pages5
JournalPediatric dermatology
Issue number5
StatePublished - Sep 1 1998

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Dermatology


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