• Keratosis pilaris (KP) is a very frequent condition:
  1. -It presents as follicular scaly papules affected all areas except the glabrous skin but mostly found on the arms, legs and buttocks.
  2. -These lesions are painless but may be red and itchy at times.
  3. -The prevalence of the condition in adults is around 40%. 50-70% of children are affected (https://knowyourskin.britishskinfoundation.org.uk/condition/keratosis-pilaris/).


  • It is associated with Atopy and Ichtyosis Vulgaris:
  1. -Both conditions are characterized by a deficiency of filaggrin, a corneal protein.
  2. -A more recent study, however found a lower prevalence ok in patients with Atopic Dermatitis (AD). In this study out a study of 500 patients with AD, only 28 had KP (under 6%), whereas 302 (60%) had KP. without AD) (https://www.mdedge.com/dermatology/article/255684/atopic-dermatitis/low-prevalence-keratosis-pilaris-atopic-dermatitis.)


  • Keratosis pilaris is caused by an excess keratin production:
  1. -The excess keratin surrounds and entraps the hair follicles in the pore.
  2. -This causes the formation of hard plugs (process known as hyperkeratinization).


  • Practically speaking, the most important part is education and good counselling so the patient understands the the nature of keratosis pilaris (KP):
  1. -Keratosis pilaris is not curable, but it may become less noticeable with time.
  2. -KP may spontaneously clear without treatment.
  3. -KP generally requires ongoing maintenance therapy


  • Treatment is as wide as it is unsatisfactory :
  1. -urea cream up to a concentration of 15%, Tretinoin cream to remove the hyperkeratosis.
  2. -Alpha Hydroxy-acids (AHA) chemical peels.
  3. -To temporarily reduce redness but not roughness, pulse dye laser treatment or intense pulsed light (IPL) can be done.


This advice is for informational purposes  only and does not replace therapeutic judgement done by a skin doctor.