By Gary M. White, MD

Cradle Cap

Cradle cap is the infantile version of seborrheic dermatitis.


The infant may have anywhere from fine, white scaling to greasy, thick hyperkeratosis of the scalp.


Gentle, daily use of baby shampoo should be tried initially. If this fails or the crust is particularly thick, a vegetable or other oil overnight and a mild tar shampoo in the AM is usually effective. A soft infant brush or comb may be helpful to remove any adherent crust. Ketoconazole 2% cream is also shown to be an effective choice with a clinical cure rate of 79%. Occasionally, a mild topical steroid may be needed.


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