What serious conditions can be disguised by nappy rash?

What at first glance may appear to be a simple nappy rash may have more problematic causes

Many infections can present in the napkin area as localised or scattered lesions.


This article concentrates on those viral and bacterial infections that present as a diffuse eruption in the guise of a napkin rash.

Herpes simplex infection

Herpes simplex infection can occur in this area, most commonly in the neonate as a primary infection.

Lesions 2-3mm in size are typically seen (figure 1) often coalescing into larger geographic-shaped lesions (figure 2).

As the area is constantly soiled and rubbed by the napkin,