ICD 10 Code for Diaper Rash on Penis and Vagina, Symptoms and Treatment

The joy of welcoming a baby to this world is often second to none. But then you happen to notice some bright red, irritated and inflamed patches of skin when changing your baby’s diapers and now are wondering if your baby may be in some kind of danger.

It is most likely that you are dealing with a diaper rash. This is a very common skin condition in babies between 9-12 months of age. Almost every baby will get the condition, however careful their parents may be. Luckily, the rash is easily treatable even at home.

Diaper rash is commonly seen on skin areas that come into contact with diapers, mostly the inner thighs and buttocks. Signs can also present on the labia and vulva in baby girls or the penis and scrotum in baby boys. In this article, we take a detailed look at diaper rash in the genital area, its symptoms, causes and available treatment options.

What causes diaper rash on penis or vagina

The factors that contribute to the occurrence of a diaper rash in the diaper region are the same ones that cause diaper rash on penis or vagina. These include:

Dirty soiled diapers

By just looking, you can clearly tell that your baby’s skin is quite fragile and delicate. This means that contact with a potential irritant is highly likely to cause some form of reaction such as seen with atopic dermatitis. Wet or dirty diapers expose the baby’s skin to ammonia, an alkaline substance present in the mixture of urine and fecal matter. This is why diaper changes should be done 8-10 times a day.

Contact with irritants

Unlike your skin, a baby’s skin is not used to harsh environments and products. This means that a certain favorite washing detergent of yours may be irritating the baby’s skin to the extent of causing a bit of rash. This also goes for scented wipes and some brands of soap.

Solid foods

When your baby is being introduced to solid foods, their bowel movements may change. This, combined with the likelihood that they will be passing stools more frequently, increases the risk of getting a diaper rash.

Yeast overgrowth

More than half the cases of persistent diaper rash are associated with candidal overgrowth. Candida is a fungus that lives on the skin without causing infection. It is kept from uncontrolled growth by ‘good’ bacteria that live on the skin or in the intestines. When the baby or mother is taking antibiotics, these bacteria may get killed off, thus allowing candida to grow uncontrollably.

Bacterial infection

When a baby’s skin is broken or cracked, staphylococcus bacteria can reach superficial tissue where conditions allow them to build colonies and hence cause staph infection diaper rash symptoms. In most cases, impetigo is the infection that results, although cellulitis may occur.

Symptoms of diaper rash on vagina or penis

How can you know that you are dealing with diaper rash on vagina or penis? What are the symptoms? Generally, diaper rash symptoms include:

  • Redness or pinkness
  • Irritation
  • Swelling
  • Dryness, dryness or cracking
  • Pain
  • Lesions or blisters

These signs are most pronounced in the diaper region. Traces may also be noticed on the tummy and, as mentioned earlier, in the genital region. Mild diaper rash symptoms include pinkness and a number of papules. Moderate to severe rash causes bold redness with lesions which may contain pus.

It is important that you be able to tell the difference between diaper rash and other types of rashes in the genital region. For instance, diaper rash on penis can be confused with a urinary infection or paraphimosis. These are conditions whose symptoms largely show up on the penis and rarely involve the diaper region. You can always contact your doctor when not sure.

Diagnosis and treatment for diaper rash on genital area

The genital area, especially in baby girls, is very prone to yeast infection. This includes in newborn babies who are yet to be introduced to solid foods. Yeast survives best in dark, warm and wet environments. This is why most fungal infections are usually found in skin folds.

If the rash persists for more than 5 days without improvement even with home treatments, check with your doctor. In fact, consider seeking medical attention after the 3rd day of a persistent diaper rash.

In a clinic, your doctor will perform physical examination for diagnosis. Rarely is culture sampling necessary.

Treatment for yeast rash is done with antifungal creams. For bacterial infection, topical, oral or IV antibiotics will be used. A 1% hydrocortisone cream may also be prescribed. It helps relieve symptoms such as inflammation, redness and pain.

Natural diaper rash treatment

Diaper rash is one of those conditions you may have to deal with more than once. Below are natural diaper rash treatment options you can try:

Baking soda

To get rid of acidity caused by diarrhea or loose stools in the diaper region, use baking soda. The remedy can be applied directly or be used in baths. The latter is more practical and effective. You only need to add enough water to make a paste or add 3 tablespoons to baby bathwater.

Oatmeal bath

If you notice dryness or scaling in the genital region caused by diaper rash, try a colloidal oatmeal bath. Oatmeal promotes skin hydration. It is also stuffed with proteins that may help close up the formed skin cracks. Like baking soda, all you need to do is add 3 tablespoons of oatmeal to bath water and let your baby soak in for 15 minutes. You can use more oatmeal depending on the volume of water you are using.

Essential oils

Coconut oil is a good example of essential oils you can use for diaper rash treatment. It soothes irritated skin, promotes hydration and also prevents infection. Coconut oil can be used on its own or in combination with baking soda or shea butter. Other examples include tea tree oil, lavender oil, frankincense oil and oil of oregano.

Apple cider vinegar

Apple cider vinegar for diaper rash can be used directly or as a washing detergent. For direct application, dilute some ACV with water and apply with a cotton ball. Alternatively, you can add some of it to bathwater.

Epsom salts

Epsom salt contains magnesium sulfate. When added to bath water, it produces a solution that is able to draw pus, fluid and toxins from diaper rash affected areas. The effectiveness of Epsom salt bath for diaper rash is comes from the process of osmosis.

Homemade creams

Homemade diaper rash creams make it possible to get the benefits of several home remedies at the same time. A good example is a homemade diaper rash cream made from shea butter, beeswax, coconut oil, zinc oxide and fermented cod liver oil.

How can you prevent diaper rash in the genital region

Although diaper rash is usually not as a result of something you have done wrong, quite a number of how to prevent diaper rash options are available. They include:

Regular diaper changes:

Even when your baby does not seem uncomfortable, avoid letting them stay in the same diaper for more than 2 hours. Consider using less absorbent diapers or cloth diapers especially during diaper rash bouts.

Always use cream:

A baby diaper rash cream containing zinc oxide or petroleum jelly keeps diaper waste from coming into contact with your baby’s skin. It should be applied at every diaper change. Before application, ensure the baby’s skin is completely dry. It is recommended that you allow about 15 minutes of air drying before placing a clean diaper onto the baby. This is very important when preventing diaper rash in newborns.

Wash thoroughly:

Always wash your hands before and after changing your baby’s diapers. Otherwise, you may end up introducing bacteria or fungi to the diaper region. Also, ensure to wash clean the diaper region, preferably with plain water. Remember to pat dry, no scrubbing or rubbing.

Consider powders:

Once, mothers always used diaper rash powders, although the habit is now falling out of favor. If you decide to use them, go for cornstarch rather than talc powders. The latter are associated with breathing problems. You can use either purchased or homemade cornstarch for diaper rash treatment. Some experts suggest that powders do not promote faster recovery from diaper rash. They however help reduce friction and also get rid of moisture.

Consider diet changes:

Citrus fruits, wheat cereals and fruit juices are foods that cause diaper rash in toddlers. They don’t necessarily cause the condition. What they do is result in loose or acidic stools. Still regarding diet changes, you can consider foods such as yogurt, bananas, rice, toast, green leafy vegetables and applesauce. This is especially when a diaper rash appears shortly after the onset of a diarrhea bout. Probiotics can also help.

Seek medical attention:

By the time your baby shows signs of discomfort when touched in the affected areas, medical attention is most likely necessary. Also, see your doctor if the rash is bleeding or not showing signs of improvement. Untreated severe diaper rash can lead to complications such as cellulitis, a potentially dangerous bacterial infection.

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