Dan Slodownik, MD. Adriene Lee, FACD. Rosemary Nixon, FACD.
Irritant contact dermatitis: A review
Article first published online: 3 JAN 2008
Australasian Journal of Dermatology
Volume 49, Issue 1, pages 1–11, January 2008
How to Cite
Slodownik, D., Lee, A. and Nixon, R. (2008), Irritant contact dermatitis: A review. Australasian Journal of Dermatology, 49: 1–11. doi: 10.1111/j.1440-0960.2007.00409.x
Funding sources: Recipient of the Fred Bauer prize, Annual Scientific Meeting, Australasian College of Dermatologists, May 2006.
- Issue published online: 3 JAN 2008
- Article first published online: 3 JAN 2008
- Submitted 5 April 2007; accepted 18 October 2007.
- difficulty in diagnosis;
- persistent postoccupational;
Irritant contact dermatitis is the most common form of contact dermatitis, and yet is often overlooked. Recent progress in understanding the pathogenesis has reignited the interest of clinicians in this area of dermatology. Irritant contact dermatitis is not a homogenous entity, but rather a number of subtypes contributing to different clinical presentations. The diagnosis of irritant contact dermatitis is often clinical, and may only be possible after the exclusion of allergic contact dermatitis with patch testing. There is no readily available diagnostic test. There is an incomplete understanding of the factors which lead to the development of cumulative irritant contact dermatitis and persistent postoccupational dermatitis. We have used the experience from our tertiary referral occupational dermatology clinic to illustrate various aspects of irritant contact dermatitis, and to highlight the difficulty sometimes encountered in making this diagnosis. We believe that increased awareness of the often pivotal role of irritant contact dermatitis, as well as all the other factors contributing to occupational dermatitis, will lead to improvement in outcomes for patients.