AIRBORNE CONTACT DERMATITIS

By Gary M. White, MD


A patient allergic to an airborne allergen may develop a dermatitis on the exposed skin. Potential allergens include pollens, dust, ragweed, sawdust, animal hairs, household sprays, volatile chemicals, compositae plants, epoxy resin, chrysanthemums, and glutaraldehyde. In India, airborne contact dermatitis (ABCD) to Parthenium hysterophorus has become epidemic. The weed is ubiquitous and eradication is difficult. Sensitivity is lifelong and spontaneous cure is almost unknown.  

Clinical

The rash may appear to be in a photodistribution. However, involvement of the undersurface of the chin and neck, the upper eyelids, and other exposed areas that do not get sun are clues. A high level of suspicion is needed.

Treatment

Topical steroids for mild to moderate disease and oral steroids for a severe episode are recommended.   Narrowband UVB is suggested for recalcitrant ABCD to Parthenium hysterophorus.

RegionalDerm

Homepage | FAQs | Use of Images | Contact Dr. White


It is not the intention of RegionalDerm.com to provide specific medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. RegionalDerm.com only intends to provide users with information regarding various medical conditions for educational purposes and will not provide specific medical advice. Information on RegionalDerm.com is not intended as a substitute for seeking medical treatment and you should always seek the advice of a qualified healthcare provider for diagnosis and for answers to your individual questions. Information contained on RegionalDerm.com should never cause you to disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking treatment. If you live in the United States and believe you are having a medical emergency call 911 immediately.