Mercaptobenzothiazole (MBT) compounds are well known contact allergens. To detect rubber allergic patients we use both MBT (2% in petrolatum) and a mercapto-mix with 4 constituents of 0.5% each in our standard series. In this article the EECDRG presents data of in total 32 475 consecutive tested patients attending the respective contact dermatitis clinics from 11 centres in Europe to determine if the mix and MBT detected the same allergic patients. We found 327 patients positive to the mix or MBT, or to both. 261 were positive to the mix and 254 to MBT. MBT was negative in 73 patients who were positive to the mix. If the mix had not been in the standard series, on average 22% of patients allergic to a mercapto-compound would have been missed, for MBT this would have been on average 20%. All clinics would have missed a significant number of positive reactions if both compounds had not been tested. We conclude, that both the mercapto mix and MBT are required in the standard series.
Subject classification (UKÄ)
- Dermatology and Venereal Diseases
- European standard series
- contact dermatitis
- delayed-type allergy