oa Current Allergy & Clinical Immunology - Occupational contact dermatitis among nurses : a report of two cases : allergies in the workplace

Volume 27, Issue 1
  • ISSN : 1609-3607



Occupational skin disease is the second most common occupational disease. Health care workers, particularly nurses, are one of the occupational groups most frequently affected by hand eczema. The prevalence of hand dermatitis (HD) among nurses is reported to range from 18% to 57%, depending on the nature of the work they perform and the department of employment, with more nurses in surgical departments and special care units affected. Owing to the nature of their job, nurses are required to wash their hands frequently, perform wet work, wear occlusive gloves for long periods, and are in regular contact with disinfectants, detergents, and medical substances. Therefore, irritant contact dermatitis is the most common type of hand dermatitis seen in this population. However, nurses are also exposed to allergens such as rubber accelerators, colophony, fragrances and preservatives which can cause Type IV contact allergy and allergic contact dermatitis. This article highlights two cases of nurses with HD; one with mixed allergic contact dermatitis and irritant contact dermatitis and another with allergic contact dermatitis; with an emphasis on how to prevent HD in this population.

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