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Merck Manual

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Common Causes of Allergic Contact Dermatitis

Common Causes of Allergic Contact Dermatitis

  • Chemicals used in shoe or clothing manufacturing: Tanning agents in leather; rubber accelerators and antioxidants in gloves, shoes, undergarments, other apparel; dyes

    Cosmetics: Hair-removing chemicals (depilatories), hair dyes, nail polish, nail polish remover, deodorants, moisturizers, aftershave lotions, perfumes, sunscreens

    Drugs in skin creams: Antibiotics (bacitracin, sulfonamides, neomycin), antihistamines (diphenhydramine, promethazine), anesthetics (benzocaine), antiseptics (thimerosal), stabilizers

    Fragrances: Found in toiletries, soaps, and scented household products (such as detergent)

  • Metals: Nickel, cobalt, chromates, mercury, gold

  • Plants: Poison ivy, poison oak, poison sumac, ragweed, primrose, thistle, mango peels, cashew shells

  • Rubber (including latex): Gloves, condoms, catheters, balloons

  • Substances in the air: Ragweed pollen, insect sprays