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October 1959

The Use of a Barrier Cream to Protect the Skin from Irritating Discharges

Author Affiliations

From the Gynecean Hospital Institute for Gynecologic Research and the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, School of Medicine and Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania.

AMA Arch Surg. 1959;79(4):688-689. doi:10.1001/archsurg.1959.04320100154026

Patients who have leakage of urine or gastrointestinal contents, particularly material from the small bowel, often suffer considerably owing to excoriation of their skins. The number of patients with such distressing soilage is increasing, owing to the greater use of radical surgery and heavy irradiation, resulting in more ileostomies, "wet" colostomies, ureterostomies, and fistulas of the gastrointestinal and urinary tracts.

In an attempt to protect the skin from irritating discharges, we have employed the usual measures of early fitting with bags where possible, and the covering of the skin with zinc or aluminum pastes, egg albumin mixtures, kaolin, bentonite, or silicone preparations. Some of these local applications are messy and annoying to use. None has proved adequate in all cases, particularly where urine, or duodenal or ileal contents are involved. We therefore decided to try barrier creams of the variety which are employed in industry to protect the skin of