Adverse dermatologic reactions to tapes are a common problem in the medical field and can delay or alter patient care, but their prevalence, etiology, and management are poorly defined.
The aims of this study were to make a distinction between true allergy and nonallergic tape reactions (NATRs) to medical tapes and to make recommendations for dermatologists in the approach to each.
We performed a cross-sectional analysis of the electronic medical record database at a large hospital system and a review of literature.
Although tape allergy is reported by 0.3% of patients, true tape allergies are rare. More commonly, patients experience NATRs. True tape allergy and NATR are mechanistically distinct and can be distinguished from each other based on history. The approach to management of each is distinct.