Contact allergy to gold and gold therapy in patients with rheumatoid arthritis
Möller H, Svensson A, Björkner B, Bruze M, Lindroth Y, Manthorpe R, Theander J
Patients with rheumatoid arthritis were investigated for contact allergy to gold in connection with treatment with gold preparations. There were 57 patients with rheumatoid arthritis previously treated with gold, with or without cutaneous side-effects, as well as 20 patients intended for such treatment; all were exposed to patch and intradermal tests with gold sodium thiosulfate, gold sodium thiomalate and auranofin. Contact allergy to gold was demonstrated in 8 out of 77 patients (10.4%). In the retrospective material, gold allergy was found in 1.8%, in the prospective material in 35.0%. Contact allergy to gold is very frequent among patients with rheumatoid arthritis before gold therapy. In order to avoid early hypersensitivity reactions skin tests should be carried out before gold therapy is instituted.