Changing trends and allergens in the patch test standard series: a mayo clinic 5-year retrospective review, january 1, 2001, through december 31, 2005

Mark D P Davis, Leigh Ann Scalf, James A Yiannias, Janet F Cheng, Rokea A El-Azhary, Audrey L Rohlinger, Sara A Farmer, Debra D Fett, Janis S Johnson, Diane L Nordberg Linehan, Donna M Richardson, Arnold L Schroeter, Suzanne M Connolly
Archives of Dermatology 2008, 144 (1): 67-72

OBJECTIVE: To present and interpret results of patch testing with the Mayo Clinic standard series over 5 years.

DESIGN: Retrospective study. A standardized patch testing technique was used. Data were recorded on a standardized computer program from January 1, 2001, to December 31, 2005, and analyzed.

SETTING: Tertiary referral center.

PATIENTS: Patients who were referred for patch testing.

INTERVENTION: Patch testing with the "standard series," ie, a standard series of allergens used by most clinicians to identify the most common offending allergens in patients with allergic contact dermatitis.

MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: Number of patients patch tested, allergens used over this period, and rates of allergic patch test reactions to allergens.

RESULTS: A total of 3854 patients (mean age, 55.1 years; age range, 6.2-99.4 years; 2576 female [66.8%]) were tested. All dermatologists in the department performed patch testing. The mean number of allergens included was 69.3 (range, 6-87). There were 2664 patients with at least 1 positive reaction (69.1%) and 1933 with 2 or more positive reactions (50.2%). Metals, fragrances, topical antibiotics, preservatives, and individual allergens used in hair-care products, topical corticosteroids, glues, plastics, and rubber were still the most common allergen groups associated with allergic patch test reactions.

CONCLUSIONS: We describe the structure of the patch testing service at our referral center. Ongoing analysis of our patch test reaction rates allows us to recommend broad, clinically relevant, and up-to-date allergens for testing.

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