Content » Vol 67, Issue 2

Dermatitis induced or aggravated by selected foodstuffs

Veien NK, Hattel T, Justesen O, Nørholm A.
DOI: 10.2340/0001555567133138


The eczema of 113 patients with dermatitis other than classical urticaria or typical atopic dermatitis cleared or showed marked improvement after one to two months of dietary restriction. In their response to a questionnaire completed at least 6 months after the initiation of the diet, 61 (54%) of these patients said that diet restriction was effective in reducing the activity of or preventing recurrence of their dermatitis. Their most common symptoms were recurrent symmetrical hand eczema, anogenital eczema, pruritic papules and excoriations of the trunk as well as a "fixed" type of eczema. Forty-nine of the 113 patients were able to reproduce their symptoms at least 3 times with certain food items, most commonly eggs, milk, tomato, cheese and fish. It is likely that both the classical food allergens and foods containing or producing histamine or other vasoactive substances could be the cause of such dermatoses or act as a non-specific aggravating factor. This type of reactivity was most common among patients with a personal and/or family history of atopic diseases (asthma, hay fever and/or atopic dermatitis). Symptoms corresponding to those of contact urticaria to food items were commonly seen among the patients.


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