protocol: USA Veterans Administration

… General

  1. Trim nails short or wear white cotton gloves all the time.
  2. Do not use creams other than those recommended by your doctor.
  3. Avoid powders and rubbing alcohol.

… Clothing

  1. Wash all new clothes and linens 3 to 5 times before use.
  2. Use unscented laundry detergents:
    • All Free & Clear
    • Tide Free
    • Cheer Free
    • Arm & Hammer Unscented
    • Wisk Free
    • Purex Unscented
  3. Do not use any fabric softener in the washer/dryer.
  4. Use 1/4 teaspoon of white vinegar in the rinse cycle of the washer instead.
  5. Avoid tight-fitting clothes.

… Bathing

  1. Bathe once a day in lukewarm water for 5 to 10 minutes.
  2. Only use your hands/finger tips
  3. No Loofa Pad
  4. No Scrubbing with a towel.
  5. No Soap on inflamed/irritated areas
  6. Soaps are rarely needed.
  7. When Soap is used, use one of the following:
    • Neutrogena Unscented Bar [*author’s addition]
    • Dove for Sensitive Skin
    • Cetaphil for Sensitive Skin
    • Vanicream cleanser (ask pharmacist)
    • Oilatum AD liquid cleanser

… After Bathing

  1. Pat skin dry only.
  2. Do not rub skin.
  3. If Prescribed Medicated Ointments, apply to the affected areas while skin is still damp.
  4. Apply moisturizing cream to the entire body, including areas treated with your Prescribed Medicated Ointment.
  5. Avoid  Lotions, moisturizing creams are much more effective.
  6. We recommend:
    • Absorbase Emollient [Unsented, Non-Medicated Base]
    • Vanicream
    • Hydrophor
    • Cetaphil Cream
    • Aveeno Cream
    • Vaseline Petroleum Jelly

… Cream Schedule


  1. Apply moisturizer generously to all skin two to three times a day.

… Decrease use of medicated ointments, as skin improves.

… Continue with moisturizer creams, once a day minimum.

VA Medical Center
Dermatology Section
Minneapolis, Minnesota

July 2004

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