- People who are overweight
- People of Celtic origin
- People who have eczema and/or dry skin.
Signs and symptoms
Keratosis pilaris is thought to be a disorder of the keratin cells (the sticky cells that line the hair follicle). Instead of exfoliating, or shedding, these cells build up around the hair follicle. The condition is usually more severe in winter and during periods of low humidity.
There is no cure for keratosis pilaris but it can be effectively controlled. Many people achieve very good temporary improvement by following a regular skin care programme but treatment needs to be ongoing and usually requires a combination of therapies. Treatment options include:
- Moisturising creams to soften the skin - creams that contain urea, salicylic acid, corticosteroids and alpha hydroxy acids may be most effective
- Prescription creams or gels containing retinoids. However, these are not suitable for young children and pregnant women
- Photodynamic therapy, pulse dye laser or intense pulsed light - this may reduce the redness but not the roughness
- Chemical peels, dermabrasion and microdermabrasion
- Laser-assisted hair removal
- Surgical extractions
- Exfoliating with pumice stone or a loofah
- Using non-soap cleansers.
Aiai, A.N. (2017). Keratosis pilaris (Web Page). Medscape Drugs and Diseases. New York, NY: WebMD LLC. http://emedicine.medscape.com/article/1070651-overview [Accessed: 07/07/17]
O'Toole, M.T. (Ed.) (2013). Mosby's Dictionary of Medicine, Nursing & Health Professionals (9th ed.). St. Louis, MI: Elsevier Mosby.