In 2018-2019 a midwifery-led research team from the University of Salford undertook a major research project into neonatal skin integrity, recruiting from three NHS Trusts in the Greater Manchester area. Over 700 pregnant women signed up to the study to test whether using different brands of baby wipe, all of which were specifically advertised as sensitive enough for newborns, can make a difference in incidence of nappy rash.
698 mother and baby pairs completed the ‘real world’ research study. Using the ‘mother-as-co-researcher’ model, mothers recorded daily observations of their infants’ skin integrity for 55 consecutive days. Data collection employed a custom designed smartphone application.
Analysis of daily survey data indicated that the brand of wipe containing the fewest ingredients was associated with the fewest days of nappy rash.
A final qualitative phase of the study explored women’s perceptions of participation and of accessing and using infant skincare advice.