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Occupational skin diseases among the nurses in the region of Lódź.

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Department of Occupational Diseases, Nofer Institute of Occupational Medicine, Lódź, Poland.


We examined 223 nurses from the Lódź region, referred to the Nofer Institute of Occupational Medicine in 1995-99 because of suspected occupational dermatoses. The diagnosis of contact allergy was based on the positive results of patch tests, and immediate allergy to common allergens and latex on the results of prick tests, as well as on the determinations of specific IgE antibodies. Contact allergy was diagnosed in 66.4% of nurses. The most frequent sensitisers were quaternary ammonium compounds (benzalkonium) (23.8%), nickel (21.5%) and formaldehyde (20.6%); allergy was somewhat less frequently caused by thimerosal (14.3%), fragrances (12.1%), glutaraldehyde (10.8%), cobalt (9.9%), thiurams (6.7%) or glyoxal (4.9%). Allergy to rubber was diagnosed in 40 patients (17.9%), including 25 cases of immediate allergy to latex, 8 cases of contact dermatitis from thiuram rubber curing accelerators, and 7 cases of mixed allergy. It has been concluded that the contact with disinfectants (40.8% of allergic nurses), metals (30.9%) and rubber (17.9%) was the most frequent source of allergy in this group of medical personnel.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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