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Pediatric Acrodermatitis Enteropathica Follow-up

  • Author: KN Siva Subramanian, MD; Chief Editor: Dirk M Elston, MD  more...
Updated: Aug 21, 2014

Further Outpatient Care

See the list below:

  • In infants and children with acrodermatitis enteropathica (AE), outpatient follow-up care is critical to ensure proper growth and development.

Inpatient & Outpatient Medications

See the list below:

  • Zinc gluconate or sulfate therapy is lifelong for patients with AE.


See the list below:

  • High-dose zinc supplementation may cause gastric upset.
  • High-dose zinc supplementation may also adversely affect copper metabolism.


See the list below:

  • Patients with AE uniformly respond to zinc therapy with a 100% survival rate.
  • With zinc supplementation, various symptoms completely resolve or substantially improve.
  • In a noncompliant patient, many of the described complications (including death) can occur.

Patient Education

See the list below:

  • Provide information regarding zinc deficiency as the cause of AE.
  • Emphasize the importance of lifelong compliance in taking zinc supplements.
Contributor Information and Disclosures

KN Siva Subramanian, MD Professor of Pediatrics and Obstetrics/Gynecology, Chief of Neonatal Perinatal Medicine, Hospital Ethicist, Medstar Georgetown University Hospital

KN Siva Subramanian, MD is a member of the following medical societies: American Academy of Pediatrics, American Association for the Advancement of Science, American Society for Parenteral and Enteral Nutrition, New York Academy of Sciences, American College of Nutrition, American Society of Law, Medicine & Ethics, Southern Society for Pediatric Research

Disclosure: Nothing to disclose.


Aimee M Barton, MD Assistant Professor, Department of Pediatrics, Division of Neonatology, Georgetown University Medical Center

Aimee M Barton, MD is a member of the following medical societies: American Academy of Pediatrics, American Medical Association

Disclosure: Nothing to disclose.

Sepideh Montazami, MD Assistant Professor, Department of Pediatrics, Division of Neonatal-Perinatal Medicine, Georgetown University School of Medicine

Sepideh Montazami, MD is a member of the following medical societies: American Academy of Pediatrics, American Medical Association, British Medical Association, Royal College of Physicians

Disclosure: Nothing to disclose.

Dominique C Pichard, MD, MS Faculty, Department of Dermatology, Children's National Medical Center

Dominique C Pichard, MD, MS is a member of the following medical societies: International Society of Dermatology, Society for Pediatric Dermatology, Women's Dermatologic Society

Disclosure: Nothing to disclose.

Specialty Editor Board

Mary L Windle, PharmD Adjunct Associate Professor, University of Nebraska Medical Center College of Pharmacy; Editor-in-Chief, Medscape Drug Reference

Disclosure: Nothing to disclose.

Robert A Schwartz, MD, MPH Professor and Head of Dermatology, Professor of Pathology, Pediatrics, Medicine, and Preventive Medicine and Community Health, Rutgers New Jersey Medical School; Visiting Professor, Rutgers University School of Public Affairs and Administration

Robert A Schwartz, MD, MPH is a member of the following medical societies: Alpha Omega Alpha, New York Academy of Medicine, American Academy of Dermatology, American College of Physicians, Sigma Xi

Disclosure: Nothing to disclose.

Chief Editor

Dirk M Elston, MD Professor and Chairman, Department of Dermatology and Dermatologic Surgery, Medical University of South Carolina College of Medicine

Dirk M Elston, MD is a member of the following medical societies: American Academy of Dermatology

Disclosure: Nothing to disclose.

Additional Contributors

Kevin P Connelly, DO Clinical Assistant Professor, Department of Pediatrics, Division of General Pediatrics and Emergency Care, Virginia Commonwealth University School of Medicine; Medical Director, Paws for Health Pet Visitation Program of the Richmond SPCA; Pediatric Emergency Physician, Emergency Consultants Inc, Chippenham Medical Center

Kevin P Connelly, DO is a member of the following medical societies: American Academy of Pediatrics, American College of Osteopathic Pediatricians, American Osteopathic Association

Disclosure: Nothing to disclose.


Robert A Silverman, MD Clinical Associate Professor, Department of Pediatrics, Georgetown University Medical Center

Robert A Silverman, MD is a member of the following medical societies: American Academy of Dermatology and Society for Pediatric Dermatology

Disclosure: Nothing to disclose.

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Skin lesions in the diaper area.
Skin lesions in the diaper area (see image above) a few weeks after treatment with zinc.
Facial lesions.
Foot lesions.
Table 1. Zinc Content of Zinc-Rich Foods
FoodServing SizeZinc Content, mg
Oysters6 medium, cooked43.4
Dungeness crab3 oz, cooked4.6
Beef3 oz, cooked5.8
Turkey, dark meat3 oz, cooked3.5
Chicken, dark meat3 oz, cooked2.4
Pork3 oz, cooked2.2
Cashews1 oz1.6
Baked beans0.5 cup1.8
Yogurt, fruit1 cup (8 oz)1.8
Chickpeas (garbanzo beans)0.5 cup1.3
Almonds1 cup (8 oz)1.0
Milk1 cup (8 oz)1.0
Cheese cheddar1 oz0.9
Peanuts1 cup (8 oz)0.9
Table 2. Recommended Dietary Allowances for Zinc (elemental)
Life StageAgeAllowance, mg/d
Infants0-6 mo22
7-12 mo33
Children1-3 y33
4-8 y55
9-13 y88
Adolescents14-18 y119
Pregnant, ≤ 19 yNA12
Breastfeeding, ≤ 19 yNA13
AdultsAll, ≥ 19 y118
Pregnant, ≥ 19 yNA11
Breastfeeding, ≥ 19 yNA12
NA = not applicable
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