JOURNAL ARTICLE

Contact sensitization in children

B M Manzini, G Ferdani, V Simonetti, M Donini, S Seidenari
Pediatric Dermatology 1998, 15 (1): 12-7
9496796
Our study concerns contact sensitization in children, the frequency of which is still debated in the literature, even though specific reports are increasing. During a 7 year period (1988-1994) 670 patients, 6 months to 12 years of age, were patch tested with the European standard series, integrated with 24 haptens, at the same concentrations as for adults. We observed positive results in 42% of our patients. Thimerosal, nickel sulfate, Kathon CG, fragrance mix, neomycin, wool alcohols, and ammoniated mercury induced most of the positive responses. The highest sensitization rate was found in children from 0 to 3 years of age. Comments on main positive haptens are reported. Seventy-seven percent of our sensitized patients were atopics, suggesting that atopy represents a predisposing factor for contact hypersensitivity. Patch testing represents a useful diagnostic procedure for the definition of childhood eczematous dermatitis and for the identification of agents inducing contact sensitization which is frequently associated with atopic dermatitis.

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