Scalp involvement in patients referred for patch testing: Retrospective cross-sectional analysis of North American Contact Dermatitis Group data, 1996 to 2016.

Journal Article (Journal Article)

BACKGROUND: Scalp conditions are often multifactorial. OBJECTIVE: To characterize patients with scalp involvement and patch-testing outcomes. METHODS: Retrospective cross-sectional analysis of North American Contact Dermatitis Group data (1996-2016). Study groups included patients with scalp involvement (≤3 anatomic sites coded) with or without additional sites. RESULTS: A total of 4.8% of patients (2331/48,753) had scalp identified as 1 of up to 3 affected anatomic sites. Approximately one-third of "scalp-only" individuals had a specific primary diagnosis of allergic contact dermatitis (38.6%), followed by seborrheic dermatitis (17.2%) and irritant contact dermatitis (9.3%). When adjacent anatomic sites were affected, allergic contact dermatitis was more frequently identified as the primary diagnosis (>50%). The top 5 currently clinically relevant allergens in scalp-only patients were p-phenylenediamine, fragrance mix I, nickel sulfate, balsam of Peru, and cinnamic aldehyde. Methylisothiazolinone sensitivity was notable when adjacent anatomic sites were involved. The top 3 specifically identified sources for scalp-only allergens were hair dyes, shampoo/conditioners, and consumer items (eg, hair appliances, glasses). LIMITATIONS: Tertiary referral population. CONCLUSION: Isolated scalp involvement was less likely to be associated with allergic contact dermatitis than when adjacent anatomic sites were involved. Overlap with multiple diagnoses was frequent, including seborrheic dermatitis, irritant dermatitis, other dermatoses, or all 3. p-Phenylenediamine was the most common allergen.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Warshaw, EM; Kullberg, SA; DeKoven, JG; Maibach, HI; Belsito, DV; Silverberg, JI; Fowler, JF; Atwater, AR; Sasseville, D; Reeder, MJ; Taylor, JS; DeLeo, VA; Pratt, MD; Zug, KA; Fransway, AF

Published Date

  • April 2021

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 84 / 4

Start / End Page

  • 977 - 988

PubMed ID

  • 32822786

Pubmed Central ID

  • 32822786

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1097-6787

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1016/j.jaad.2020.08.046


  • eng

Conference Location

  • United States