Objective To assess the efficacy and clinical outcome of 2% mupirocin in a polyethylene glycol base and nystatin cream as treatment regimens in diaper candidosis.

Design A prospective randomized comparative study.

MethodsIn vitro. The susceptibility of 20 clinical isolates of Candida albicans to 2% mupirocin, nystatin, and five additional antifungal agents was evaluated using the Nathan agar-well diffusion assay. The minimum inhibitory concentration (MIC) of mupirocin against the Candida species was determined using a tube dilution method. In vivo. Twenty patients (mean age, 12 months; range, 1 month to 4 years) with moderate to severe Monilia diaper dermatitis either had mupirocin ointment or nystatin cream applied to the infected area every 8 h or after every diaper change for a period of 7 days. Microscopic examination of skin scrapings and mycologic and microbiological cultures were performed before treatment and daily for 7 days, and progress was clinically assessed.

ResultsIn vitro. Topical mupirocin produced a greater zone of inhibition than nystatin cream, i.e. a mean of 27.2 mm (SD 1.55) compared with a mean of 17.3 mm (SD 1.08) for nystatin cream. MIC for mupirocin of 512 μg/mL in one case, 256 μg/mL in six cases, 200 μg/mL in 10 cases and 400 μg/mL in three cases were obtained for the 20 clinical isolates. C. albicans also displayed a universal sensitivity to mupirocin and nystatin. In vivo. Eradication of all Candida organisms was achieved within 2–6 days (mean, 2.6 days) in 10 patients receiving topical mupirocin therapy with rapid healing of the excoriated wounds (mean, 4.7 days). Both Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacteria were eradicated from the infected area within the trial period. Ten patients received topical nystatin cream and, in each case, Candida was successfully cleared within 5 days (mean, 2.8 days). Only three wounds were clinically healed within the trial period, however. The remaining seven wounds showed evidence of improved, but ongoing excoriated dermatitis and a heavy growth of polymicrobial organisms.

Conclusions Both agents eradicated Candida, the major difference being the marked response of the diaper dermatitis to mupirocin. Mupirocin should be applied topically 3–4 times daily or with each diaper change and is an excellent antifungal agent.