Hidden exposure to formaldehyde in a swab caused allergic contact dermatitis

Research output: Contribution to journalDebate/Note/Editorial


Octocrylene is an ultraviolet (UV)B and UVAII absorber that was introduced some 15 years ago, and is now widely used in sunscreen agents and skin care cosmetics. Since 2003, several studies, notably from France, Belgium, Spain, and Italy, have reported an increasing number of patients with photocontact allergy to octocrylene. This reaction is seen mainly in adult patients who have previously used topical products containing the non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug ketoprofen. Photosensitization to ketoprofen leads, in many cases, to photocontact allergy to octocrylene; the mechanism of this reaction is unknown. Contact allergy to octocrylene also occurs, but is far less frequent, and is seen, in most cases, in children, resulting from the use of octocrylene-containing sunscreen products. In this article, (photo)contact allergy to octocrylene is fully reviewed.


  • Ulrik Fischer Friis
  • Jakob Dahlin
  • Magnus Bruze
  • Torkil Menne
  • Jeanne Duus Johansen
Research areas and keywords

Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY

  • Dermatology and Venereal Diseases


  • formaldehyde allergy, formaldehyde release, hidden exposure
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)258-260
JournalContact Dermatitis
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2014
Publication categoryResearch