Carmine is a widely used “natural” food additive that has been reported to provoke both an immediate hypersensitivity and a delayed systemic response with cutaneous expression. Systemic contact dermatitis describes the hypersensitivity reaction following systemic re-exposure of the inciting allergen in previously sensitized individuals. In individuals with recalcitrant dermatitis and a positive carmine intolerance history and/or patch test, it is important to consider a trial topical and dietary elimination of carmine-associated products and foods.
From the Department of Dermatology, Loma Linda University, CA.
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The authors have no funding or conflicts of interest to declare.