Analysis of Dermatologic Disorders Occurring in Major League Baseball Players

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Alex M. Glazer
Aaron S. Farberg
Stephen Donohue
Darrell S. Rigel


baseball, dermatology, disease distribution, sports medicine


Objective: To determine distribution of dermatologic disease among major league baseball (MLB) players and compare the distribution to that seen in the general population.

Design: Cross Sectional Survey

Setting: Data was collected via anonymous, online, randomized survey in January 2017.

Participants: Head athletic trainers for 25 MLB teams

Main Outcome Measures: The distribution of dermatologic disease encountered by MLB athletic trainers for players versus non-player personnel.

Results: The 3 most commonly encountered dermatologic conditions for MLB trainers among baseball players were blisters, contact dermatitis, and nail problems including onychomycosis. In contrast, the 3 most common dermatoses seen among the non-player personnel control group were rash, tinea, and concerning skin lesion which more closely resembled the distribution of skin diseases among the general population.

Conclusions: MLB players experienced a different mix with a greater proportion of mechanical, infectious, and contact related skin conditions likely due to the baseball-related activities that impact on these athletes’ skin on a day-to-day basis. The prevalence of the dermatologic disorders noted in the study reinforces the importance of focused dermatologic education for trainers to enhance player care.

Keywords: baseball; MLB; dermatology; disease distribution; blisters; contact dermatitis; mechanical skin injury; elite athletes


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