ARTICLE: Compromised Skin Barrier and Sensitive Skin in Diverse Populations.
Journal of drugs in dermatology : JDD. 2021;(4):s17-s22
The most important function of the stratum corneum (SC), the uppermost layer of the human epidermis, is the formation of the epidermal permeability barrier. Lipids, particularly ceramides, cholesterol, and free fatty acids, together form lamellar membranes in the extracellular spaces of the SC that limit the loss of water and electrolytes. In addition to preventing water and electrolyte loss, the SC as a permeability barrier prevents the entry of harmful irritants, allergens, and microorganisms into the skin. Disruption of the epidermal barrier leads to skin that is irritated, more reactive, and more sensitive than normal skin. SC thickness, lipid profile, and barrier function vary with different ethnic groups, which is also reflected the differences in prevalence and manifestation of diverse skin conditions related to the skin barrier function such as atopic dermatitis and sensitive skin. In addition to these compromised skin barrier related conditions, we are just now starting to understand the direct and indirect impact of COVID-19 on the skin and how current preventative measures are contributing to skin barrier disorders. Our understanding of various approaches for restoration of skin barrier, especially the role of topically applied mixtures of cholesterol, ceramides, and essential/nonessential free fatty acids (FFAs) allows for the strengthening of the compromised skin barrier and alleviation of symptoms and discomfort associated with skin barrier disorders. Ceramide containing products on the market are commonly available and offer protection and reparative benefits to the skin barrier. J Drugs Dermatol. 20(4 Suppl):17-22. doi:10.36849/JDD.S589C.
'Colouring' wipes phenomenon: a peculiar skin pigmentation induced by ascorbic acid observed during lockdown.
Clinical and experimental dermatology. 2021;(6):1075-1078
During the SARS-CoV-2 (COVID-19) pandemic, an unusual outbreak of yellow-brown pigmentation on the skin of children was reported. Because of the restrictions on movement promulgated during the lockdown, most consultancies were performed using teledermatology. Data concerning personal care products and application of topical substances were collected, which revealed use of the same brand of wipes for all patients. A liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry analysis was performed to compare the components of the wipes before and after the observation of the pigmentation, in order to detect the responsible substance. This analysis revealed a level about 10-fold higher than normal of ascorbic acid and its oxidation products (dehydroascorbic acid and L-threonic acid) in the wipes associated with the pigmentation. These 'colouring wipes' represent a peculiar but harmless phenomenon that highlights the importance of careful questioning about personal care products used by patients.