Radiodermatitis acuta

Last Updated: 2020-11-23

Author(s): Anzengruber F., Navarini A.

ICD11: -

Acute X-ray dermatitis, acute radiation dermatitis, acute radiodermatitis.

Dermatitis caused by ionising radiation (α-, β-, γ-, Radium- and Boundary Rays) within 6-12 days.

  • Grade I: Erythema.
  • Grade II: Vesicles and blisters. Loss of hair. 
  • Grade III: ulcers, tissue necrosis.

Radiation protection measures.

Regular dermatological examinations to exclude neoplasia, which can occur with delay.

Not during radiation exposure (e.g. after the end of radiation therapy).

Grade I & II

  • Mometasone furoate (Elocom®) Cream / Lsg. / Ointment
  • Clobetasol (Dermovate®) cream 1-2 days (for 1-3 days)
  • Tannins (Tannosynt®)- Lsg. (for hand baths).
  • Iodine povidone (Betadine®) solution / ointment / ointment gauze
  • Tricolosan (Procutol®) Skin Wash Lotion
  • Polihexanide (Lavasept®) Concentration / Solution


Grade III: Stage-appropriate wound therapy

Systemic Therapy

  • Acetylsalicylic acid p.o. 500 mg 3x daily
  • Tramadol 20-40 drops daily
  • Ibuprofen p.o. 400-800 mg daily if required.


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  2. Palatty PL, Azmidah A, Rao S, et al. Topical application of a sandal wood oil and turmeric based cream prevents radiodermatitis in head and neck cancer patients undergoing external beam radiotherapy: a pilot study. Br J Radiol 2014;87:20130490.
  3. Katayama Y, Yamawaki S, Yoshimura M, et al. Severe Acute Radiodermatitis in a Keloid Patient with Takayasu's Arteritis. Plast Reconstr Surg Glob Open 2014;2:e270.
  4. Cui Z, Xin M, Yin H, Zhang J, Han F. Topical use of olive oil preparation to prevent radiodermatitis: results of a prospective study in nasopharyngeal carcinoma patients. Int J Clin Exp Med 2015;8:11000-6.