Preventing and treating intertrigo in the large skin folds of adults: a literature overview

Dermatol Nurs. 2004 Feb;16(1):43-6, 49-57.


Intertrigo is an inflammatory dermatosis of the skin folds of the body, for which a large variety of topical medications may be recommended. A systematic literature review was performed to find scientific evidence for preventing and treating intertrigo within the nursing domain. Seven electronic databases were searched with a simple broad-scope search strategy. The aim was to identify all publications that concerned intertrigo itself and other conditions that were related to intertriginous regions. This search produced 451 references. A final set of 24 studies was retained and analyzed on content and methodologic quality. Most studies concerned treatments with antifungals or disinfectants in heterogeneous research samples, with only small subsamples of people with intertrigo. Six studies were randomized controlled trials. In general, the methodologic quality of the studies was poor. The analyzed studies provided no scientific evidence for any type of nursing prevention or treatment strategy. There is a great need for well-designed clinical studies on intertrigo.

Publication types

  • Review
  • Systematic Review

MeSH terms

  • Administration, Topical
  • Adult
  • Antifungal Agents / therapeutic use
  • Disinfectants / therapeutic use
  • Evidence-Based Medicine
  • Humans
  • Intertrigo / classification
  • Intertrigo / diagnosis
  • Intertrigo / etiology
  • Intertrigo / therapy*
  • Patient Selection
  • Practice Guidelines as Topic
  • Primary Prevention
  • Randomized Controlled Trials as Topic / standards
  • Research Design / standards
  • Sample Size
  • Skin Care / methods*
  • Skin Care / nursing
  • Skin Care / standards
  • Treatment Outcome


  • Antifungal Agents
  • Disinfectants