Feds: No link between Dry Max diapers, rashes

September 2, 2010 (WASHINGTON)

The Consumer Product Safety Commission said Thursday that it has reviewed 4,700 complaints, but found no specific cause linking Pampers diapers with new Dry Max technology to diaper rash.

"We hope that today's announcement will reassure the millions of moms and dads and child caregivers who place their trust in Pampers and Dry Max every day," Jodi Allen, vice president for Pampers, said in a statement.

Procter & Gamble launched new versions of its Swaddlers and Cruisers diapers in the U.S. in March. The thinner diapers use the company's Dry Max absorbant gel material to replace the paper pulp previously used. Parents' groups blamed the change for severe skin problems.

In May, the CPSC launched an investigation of Dry Max following complaints of babies and toddlers suffering severe and persistent diaper rashes and blisters that resemble chemical burns.

They agency said it reviewed the materials, construction, heat retention and moisture retention properties of the Dry Max diapers, along with clinical and toxicological data. CPSC also analyzed scientific information provided by Canadian health officials.

While it found nothing specific about the Dry Max diapers that causes rashes, CPSC said that most babies do get diaper rash at least once. If a rash occurs, the agency recommends changing diaper brands and consulting a pediatrician.

The agency will continue to monitor the situation and encourages parents and caregivers to send additional reports of rashes, especially after visiting a doctor.

A Facebook group asking Procter & Gamble to bring back the older versions of its diapers has grown to more than 11,000 members.

The criticism has had P&G officials scrambling to protect the brand responsible for more than 10 percent of the company's $79 billion annual revenue. It diverted 40 to 50 empoloyees to marketing and research on Dry Max full time and extended its Pampers phone line opening hours. The company also flew four so-called "mommy bloggers" from around the country to P&G's offices in Cincinnati to influence parents seeking product reviews, moneysaving tips and other advice.

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