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Australas J Dermatol. 2001 Feb;42(1):33-5.

Allergic contact dermatitis due to benzalkonium chloride in plaster of Paris.

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Department of Dermatology, Royal Newcastle Hospital, Newcastle, New South Wales, Australia.


Plaster of Paris (POP) bandages are extensively used for splinting and casting injured or surgically repaired body parts. Allergic contact dermatitis caused by POP has been reported only rarely in the medical literature. An 81-year-old woman developed multiple large, tense, haemorrhagic bullae on the palm, and an acute vesicular eczematous eruption on the forearm, after the application of a POP splint. Subsequent patch testing revealed positive reactions to both the POP bandage used and to benzalkonium chloride, a component of the POP formulation. Patch tests to two other POP products without benzalkonium chloride were negative. These results confirm those of previous studies which have implicated the quaternary ammonium compound benzalkonium chloride as the allergen responsible for POP-induced allergic contact dermatitis.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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