Neonatal seborrhoeic dermatitis

(Redirected from Seborrheic dermatitis)


  • Also known as cradle cap, infantile seborrhoeic dermatitis, crusta lactea, milk crust, and honeycomb disease
  • Starts between 2-6 weeks of life; improves by 6 months
  • The role of malassezia furfur, a non-contagious fungus, in the pathogenesis of neonatal seborrheic dermatitis is unclear

Dermatitis Types

Clinical Features

An infant with "cradle cap" (i.e. seborrhoeic dermatitis).
Image closeup
Seborrheic dermatitis child.jpg
  • Greasy yellow-red scales
  • Proclivity for scalp (cradlecap), but may find around ears, cheeks, neck, and nasolabial folds
  • Not pruritic
  • Also axilla and groin where there are significant sebaceous glands

Differential Diagnosis

Neonatal Rashes



  • Clinical diagnosis
    • Consider immunosuppression or HIV in severe or widespread lesions

Neonatal atopic dermatitis vs. seborrhoeic dermatitis

Category Neonatal atopic dermatitis Neonatal seborrhoeic dermatitis
Presentation 1-2 months 2-6 months
Puritic (fussiness) Yes No


  • Salicylic acid shampoo (Sebulex) OR
  • Application of mineral oil followed by washing and removal of scales with comb
  • Avoid topical steroids


  • Outpatient

See Also

Neonatal Rashes