Aluminum-Allergen of the Year 2022

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Exposure to elemental aluminum and its salts is unavoidable. Aluminum as a metal is present in transport, construction, packaging, and electronic equipment. Aluminum salts are present in consumer products, food items and drinking water, vaccines, drugs, and antiperspirants. Aluminum in vaccines and preparations for allergen-specific immunotherapy are the major sensitization sources. The predominent clinical manifestations of aluminum allergy are pruritic subcutaneous nodules and eczematous dermatitis. Patch testing shall be performed with aluminum chloride hexahydrate (ACH) in petrolatum. The preparation with ACH 10% detects substantially more aluminum allergy than ACH 2%. A patch test with elemental aluminum, for example, an empty Finn Chamber, is only positive when there is a strong aluminum allergy. A patch test reading should be performed 1 week after the application so as not to miss 15% to 20% of aluminum allergy. Aluminum should be included in any baseline patch test series for children and investigated for a possible inclusion in baseline series for adults. Aluminum test chambers can interfere with the testing resulting in both false-negative and false-positive patch test reactions to nonaluminum contact sensitizers.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)10-15
Number of pages6
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2022

Subject classification (UKÄ)

  • Dermatology and Venereal Diseases


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