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What Are the Common Allergens for Anogenital Dermatitis?

Individuals with anogenital dermatitis had more reactions to preservatives, fragrances, topical anesthetics, and topical corticosteroids compared with those without anogenital involvement, according to the findings of a recent study.

In the retrospective, cross-sectional study, the researchers analyzed data of 28,481 individuals who underwent patch testing at outpatient referral clinics from January 1, 2005 through December 31, 2016 and were enrolled in the North American Contact Dermatitis Group database. Among these patients, 832 patients had anogenital involvement and 449 patients only had anogenital dermatitis.

There were significantly more male patients in the group with anogenital dermatitis compared with those without anogenital involvement, the researchers said.
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Among patients with anogenital involvement, the researchers found female patients were significantly less likely to have allergic contact dermatitis as a final diagnosis compared with male patients. Other dermatoses, such as lichen planus, lichen sclerosus, or lichen simplex chronicus, were more frequently diagnosed in female patients compared with male patients, they said.

In addition, 227 of 449 patients with only anogenital involvement had 1 or more relevant reactions with patch testing, the researchers stated. A total of 152 patients met the definition for anogenital allergic contact dermatitis, they added.

Compared with individuals without anogenital involvement, those with anogenital dermatitis had statistically significantly more reactions to balsam of Peru, methylchloroisothiazolinone and methylisothiazolinone, benzocaine, triamcinolone acetonide, budesonide, ethylenediamine dihydrochloride, lidocaine, and desoximetasone, the researchers said.

“For individuals with anogenital involvement suspected of having allergic contact dermatitis, reactions to preservatives, fragrances, medications (particularly topical anesthetics), and topical corticosteroids should be tested,” they concluded.


Warshaw EM, Kimyon RS, Silverberg JI, et al. Evaluation of patch test findings in patients with anogenital dermatitis [Published online November 27, 2019]. JAMA Dermatol. doi:10.1001/jamadermatol.2019.3844


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