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The impact of common metal allergens in daily devices

Hamann, Dathan; Hamann, Carsten R.; Thyssen, Jacob P.

Current Opinion in Allergy and Clinical Immunology: October 2013 - Volume 13 - Issue 5 - p 525–530
doi: 10.1097/ACI.0b013e32836457bf
SKIN ALLERGY: Edited by Torsten Zuberbier and Thomas Werfel

Purpose of review We are widely exposed to metal allergens in our daily doings. As exposures constantly changes because of fashion trends and technological developments, there is a need for a continuous update of patch testers. An overview of consumer metal exposure studies that have been published in 2012 and 2013 is provided as well as lists of common metal exposures.

Recent findings Nickel release in concentrations that cause nickel allergy and contact dermatitis is seen from laptop computers. Cobalt is found in leather as a dye and may cause chronic dermatitis. Chromium is used as a dye and for tanning in leather items and is found in nearly all shoes and released from a high proportion.

Summary New consumer items should continuously be considered and investigated for metal release when patients with positive patch test results to metal allergens are evaluated.

aUniversity of Arizona College of Medicine-Phoenix, Phoenix, Arizona

bLoma Linda University School of Medicine, Loma Linda, California, USA

cDepartment of Dermato-Allergology, Copenhagen University Hospital Gentofte, Gentofte, Hellerup, Denmark

Correspondence to Jacob P. Thyssen, MD, PhD, National Allergy Research Centre, Department of Dermato-Allergology, Copenhagen University Hospital Gentofte, Niels Andersensvej 65, 2900 Hellerup, Denmark. Tel: +45 3977 7307; fax: +45 3977 7118; e-mail:

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