Association between cobalt allergy and dermatitis caused by leather articles: a questionnaire study

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BACKGROUND: Cobalt is a strong skin sensitizer and a prevalent contact allergen. Recent studies have recognized exposure to leather articles as a potential cause of cobalt allergy.

OBJECTIVES: To examine the association between contact allergy to cobalt and a history of dermatitis resulting from exposure to leather.

METHODS: A questionnaire case-control study was performed: the case group consisted of 183 dermatitis patients with a positive patch test reaction to cobalt chloride and a negative patch test reaction to potassium dichromate; the control group consisted of 621 dermatitis patients who did not react to either cobalt or chromium in patch testing. Comparisons were made by use of a χ(2) -test, Fisher's exact, and the Mann-Whitney test. Logistic regression analyses were used to test for associations while taking confounding factors into consideration.

RESULTS: Leather was observed as the most frequent exposure source causing dermatitis in the case group. Although the case group significantly more often reported non-occupational dermatitis caused by leather exposure (p < 0.001), no association was found between cobalt allergy and dermatitis caused by work-related exposure to leather.

CONCLUSIONS: Our study suggests a positive association between cobalt allergy and a history of dermatitis caused by non-occupational exposure to leather articles.

Original languageEnglish
JournalContact Dermatitis
Issue number2
Pages (from-to)106-114
Number of pages9
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2015

    Research areas

  • Adult, Aged, Aged, 80 and over, Allergens, Case-Control Studies, Cobalt, Cross-Sectional Studies, Dermatitis, Allergic Contact, Dermatitis, Occupational, Female, Humans, Male, Middle Aged, Patch Tests, Quality of Life, Severity of Illness Index, Surveys and Questionnaires, Tanning, Young Adult

ID: 156084899