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Hand dermatitis among Korean nursing students


Derek R. Smith, Department of Hazard Assessment, National Institute of Industrial Health, 6-21-1 Nagao, Tama-Ku, Kawasaki 214-8585, Japan. Email:


The aim of this study was to conduct the first epidemiological investigation of hand dermatitis among Korean nursing students. We used a previously validated questionnaire survey, which was translated into Korean and given to 270 students from a university-based nursing school in Seoul. A total of 202 questionnaires were received. The students’ hand dermatitis prevalence ranged from 6.9% in the first year to 22.9% in the fourth year. Logistic regression indicated that students with systemic allergies were 4.2 times as likely to suffer from hand dermatitis. Year of study and living arrangements were also shown to have statistically significant correlations with hand dermatitis. Overall, this study suggests that hand dermatitis might be less prevalent among Korean nursing students when compared with their international counterparts. However, the identification of systemic allergies as a significant risk factor was consistent with previous reports from other countries.