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Pediatr Dermatol. 2008 Sep-Oct;25(5):520-7. doi: 10.1111/j.1525-1470.2008.00769.x.

Clinically relevant patch test reactions in children--a United States based study.

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Department of Dermatology and Cutaneous Surgery, University of Miami, Miami, Florida, USA.


Allergic contact dermatitis in the pediatric population is more common than previously recognized, with recent prevalence estimates of positive patch test reactions in the range of 14-70% of children patch tested. The aim of this study was to confirm the prevalence of clinically relevant allergic contact dermatitis in children at two referral centers and determine the most common contact allergens. We performed a retrospective case series analysis of 65 symptomatic children (35 girls and 30 boys) aged 1-18 years old who were patch tested over a 5-year period for recalcitrant dermatitis. Positive patch test reactions were noted in 54 of the 65 children (prevalence rate of 83%) to 80 different allergens. Fifty children (77%) had positive reactions which were determined to be of "definite" or "probable" current clinical relevance. We conclude that the diagnosis of allergic contact dermatitis to specific relevant allergens is common in children referred for patch testing and that contact allergy should be considered in all children with recalcitrant dermatitis. With this article, we review the literature and present a US based study regarding the clinical relevance of positive patch test reactions in children.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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