Maintenance Notice

Due to necessary scheduled maintenance, the JMIR Publications website will be unavailable from Wednesday, July 01, 2020 at 8:00 PM to 10:00 PM EST. We apologize in advance for any inconvenience this may cause you.

Who will be affected?

Advertisement

Currently submitted to: JMIR Dermatology

Date Submitted: Jul 23, 2020
Open Peer Review Period: Jul 23, 2020 - Aug 9, 2020
(closed for review but you can still tweet)

NOTE: This is an unreviewed Preprint

Warning: This is a unreviewed preprint (What is a preprint?). Readers are warned that the document has not been peer-reviewed by expert/patient reviewers or an academic editor, may contain misleading claims, and is likely to undergo changes before final publication, if accepted, or may have been rejected/withdrawn (a note "no longer under consideration" will appear above).

Peer-review me: Readers with interest and expertise are encouraged to sign up as peer-reviewer, if the paper is within an open peer-review period (in this case, a "Peer-Review Me" button to sign up as reviewer is displayed above). All preprints currently open for review are listed here. Outside of the formal open peer-review period we encourage you to tweet about the preprint.

Citation: Please cite this preprint only for review purposes or for grant applications and CVs (if you are the author).

Final version: If our system detects a final peer-reviewed "version of record" (VoR) published in any journal, a link to that VoR will appear below. Readers are then encourage to cite the VoR instead of this preprint.

Settings: If you are the author, you can login and change the preprint display settings, but the preprint URL/DOI is supposed to be stable and citable, so it should not be removed once posted.

Submit: To post your own preprint, simply submit to any JMIR journal, and choose the appropriate settings to expose your submitted version as preprint.

Warning: This is an author submission that is not peer-reviewed or edited. Preprints - unless they show as "accepted" - should not be relied on to guide clinical practice or health-related behavior and should not be reported in news media as established information.

Does wearing a COVID-19 face mask increase the incidence of dermatological conditions for healthcare workers? A brief qualitative review of current literature.

  • Robyn-Jenia Wilcha; 

ABSTRACT

Background:

COVID-19 is a health emergency. It was found in Wuhan, Hubei Province, China and has rapidly spread around the world, leaving no country untouched. SARS-CoV-2 is a respiratory infection characterised by a pneumonia of unknown aetiology. It is transmitted through respiratory droplets, for example: when breathing, talking and coughing. Transmission of the virus is high. Healthcare workers play critical roles in providing help to those affected with COVID-19; this could not be done without the use of personal protective equipment. Personal protective equipment, also known as PPE, involves the use of goggles, masks, gloves and gowns with the aims of protecting healthcare workers and reducing the transmission of the virus. PPE has proven to be effective in reducing the transmission of the virus, however multiple reports of skin disease and damage associated with occupational mask wear have come to light.

Objective:

The objective is to review current literature of newly arising dermatological conditions as a result of occupational mask wear during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Methods:

A qualitative review investigating new reports of dermatological conditions associated with occupational mask wear was carried out by referencing keywords, including: “covid mask dermatology, covid mask skin and covid mask skin damage” from the databases of PubMed, Google Scholar and ResearchGate. 287 articles were found (PubMed: 59, Google Scholar: 90, ResearchGate: 138); 40 articles successfully formed part of the study. A further 7 articles were found by manually reviewing reference lists of the included articles. The findings were tabulated and analysed under the headings: dermatological diagnosis, causes and management.

Results:

Qualitative analysis of the reviewed data was carried out. A number of dermatological conditions, as listed in Table 1, were found to be increasing due to prolonged and frequent contact of facial masks. The number of healthcare workers affected by symptoms of skin damage was significant in almost all studies, showing a worldwide problem was present. Pressure-related injuries were often the most serious complaint; recommendations to reduce this type of injury include hydrocolloid dressings, plastic handles, education and regular moisturising. Innovation of protective equipment as well as services, such as virtual clinics, need to be advanced to protect the welfare of staff.

Conclusions:

In these unprecedented times, PPE has been an effective barrier in reducing the transmission of COVID-19 to healthcare workers. This has allowed healthcare workers to bravely provide care to patients. However, the evidence collated suggests that despite the obvious benefits of using facial masks to protect the respiratory system, there are also considerable health consequences to the skin. Future research needs to pursue the advancement of facial masks which considers both the protection of the respiratory system as well as skin care, something which this review demonstrates has been neglected.


 Citation

Please cite as:

Wilcha R

Does wearing a COVID-19 face mask increase the incidence of dermatological conditions for healthcare workers? A brief qualitative review of current literature.

JMIR Preprints. 23/07/2020:22789

DOI: 10.2196/preprints.22789

URL: https://preprints.jmir.org/preprint/22789

Download PDF


Request queued. Please wait while the file is being generated. It may take some time.

© The authors. All rights reserved. This is a privileged document currently under peer-review/community review (or an accepted/rejected manuscript). Authors have provided JMIR Publications with an exclusive license to publish this preprint on it's website for review and ahead-of-print citation purposes only. While the final peer-reviewed paper may be licensed under a cc-by license on publication, at this stage authors and publisher expressively prohibit redistribution of this draft paper other than for review purposes.