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The University of Southampton
Medicine

Research project: BATHE Bath additives in the treatment of childhood eczema - Dormant

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The BATHE study aims to find out whether bath emollients (moisturisers that are added to the bath) help with childhood eczema or not.

The BATHE study found that the bath emollients did not help childhood eczema.

In this study children aged 1 to 11 with eczema were randomly allocated to 2 groups: (1) standard eczema treatment plus bath emollient and (2) standard eczema management without bath emollient. Parents or carers completed weekly diaries including a questionnaire about eczema severity.

Most children's eczema improved a bit over the study year but there was no real difference between the two groups in how much they improved. The paper is published in the BMJ and the full HTA report can be found on the 'Publications' tab. A video summary can be found on the Bathe website.

Although we found that pouring bath emollients into the bath water doesn't help, it is still really important to use leave-on emollient moisturisers and to use emollient products where these help to avoid soap.

We are very grateful to all the families and practices who helped us to answer this question. We hope that it will help to make sense of what treatments are worth spending time and money on.

Completed: This study is now complete, please view the associated articles in the Publications tab.

Related research groups

Primary Care, Population Sciences and Medical Education
Primary Care Research group

Articles

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