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Contact Dermatitis. 2008 Aug;59(2):109-14. doi: 10.1111/j.1600-0536.2008.01375.x.

Contact sensitization to 4,4'-diaminodiphenylmethane and to isocyanates among general dermatology patients.

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Department of Dermatology, Turku University Hospital, Turku, Finland.



Diisocyanates and 4,4'-diaminodiphenylmethane (MDA) are industrial sensitizers. Occupational asthma is a risk among workers exposed to diisocyanates. Exposure may also lead to contact sensitization and allergic contact dermatitis.


The aim of this study was to determine the occurrence of contact sensitization to MDA and to diisocyanates among general dermatology patients.


Patch testing with MDA was carried out in 1595 patients. Diphenylmethane-4,4'-diisocyanate (MDI) and toluene-2,4-diisocyanate (TDI) were tested in 1023 patients and isophorone diisocyanate (IPDI) and 1,6-hexamethylene diisocyanate (HDI) in 433 patients. The clinical data and sources of exposure are analysed.


MDA reactions were seen in 17 (1.1%) patients and MDI reactions in 4 patients. Six MDA-positive patients reacted to p-phenylenediamine and two to epoxy chemicals. 5/10 of the TDI reactions were seen concurrently with reactions to MDI, MDA, HDI, or to IPDI. IPDI reactions were seen in eight patients and HDI reactions in two patients. Possible sources of exposure were traced in most patients, although the association with the current dermatitis was not apparent in all cases.


(Di)isocyanates may induce contact sensitization with or without allergic contact dermatitis.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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