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Contact Dermatitis to Carmine

Rundle, Chandler W., BS; Jacob, Sharon E., MD; Machler, Brian C., MD

doi: 10.1097/DER.0000000000000386

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.

Address reprint requests to Brian C. Machler, MD, Center for Dermatology, P.A., 128 Columbia Turnpike, Florham Park, NJ 07932. E-mail:

The authors have no funding or conflicts of interest to declare.

© 2018 American Contact Dermatitis Society
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