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January 1958

Skin pH Pattern in the Newborn Infant

Author Affiliations

New York
From the Department of Pediatrics, New York Medical College-Metropolitan Medical Center.

AMA Am J Dis Child. 1958;95(1):35-41. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1958.02060050037006

A markedly acid surface reaction is a characteristic attribute of the healthy human skin. The physiologic occurrence of strictly localized zones where acidity is diminished has been the subject of previous reports1,2; they deal primarily with differences among the skin pH patterns of children, adolescents, and adults.

Little is known about the skin pH of infants during the first month after birth. The only pertinent investigation known to us is that of Taddei.3 His findings uniformly demonstrate that the skin pH is maintained in the neighborhood of 6.5 from birth through the 20th day. The presence of such uniform and relatively elevated values would tend to indicate that the mechanism responsible for the physiologic acidification of the skin surface has not yet developed in these young infants.

Our own studies do not confirm Taddei's findings. It is the purpose of this communication to report the results of skin

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