Send to

Choose Destination
Contact Dermatitis. 2014 Nov;71(5):273-9. doi: 10.1111/cod.12287. Epub 2014 Aug 21.

Occupational contact dermatitis caused by D-limonene.

Author information

Occupational Medicine, Finnish Institute of Occupational Health, FI-00250, Helsinki, Finland.



Limonene is widely used as a fragrance substance and solvent in cleansing products. Oxidized limonene is a frequent contact allergen among consumers of cosmetics, personal care products, and scented household cleaning products. Less is known about the sources of occupational exposure and occupational contact dermatitis caused by limonene.


To report 14 patients with occupational contact allergy to limonene.


The patients were examined in 2008-2013. An in-house preparation of oxidized limonene was patch tested as 3% and 5% in petrolatum from 2008 to August 2010, and after this as 3%, 1% and 0.3% pet. From 2012 onwards, a commercial test substance of limonene hydroperoxides was also used. We assessed the patients' occupational and domestic exposure to limonene.


Occupational limonene allergy was observed in workers who used limonene-containing machine-cleaning detergents and hand cleansers, and in workers who used limonene-containing surface cleaners and dishwashing liquids similar to those used by consumers. In 3 cases, the occupational limonene allergy resulted from work-related use of limonene-containing, leave-on cosmetic products.


Limonene is a frequent occupational sensitizer in hand cleansers and cleaning products. Occupational limonene contact allergy may also be caused by exposure to cosmetic products scented with limonene.


contact allergy; d-limonene; limonene hydroperoxides; occupational contact dermatitis; oxidation of limonene; patch testing

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Wiley
Loading ...
Support Center