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Multiple cases of sensitization to an antiseptic containing chlorhexidine digluconate/benzalkonium chloride/benzyl alcohol with different profiles of sensitization in adults and children.

  • Beaumont, Charlotte1
  • Darrigade, Anne-Sophie2
  • Barbaud, Annick3
  • Collet, Evelyne4
  • Raison-Peyron, Nadia5
  • Bourrain, Jean-Luc6
  • Assier, Haudrey7
  • Giordano-Labadie, Françoise8
  • Bara-Passot, Corina9
  • Milpied, Brigitte2
  • Tétart, Florence10
  • Armingaud, Pierre11
  • Castelain, Florence12
  • Benkalfate, Lamia13
  • Boulard, Claire14
  • Delaunay, Juliette15
  • Mathelier-Fusade, Pascale16
  • Pecquet, Catherine16
  • Pralong, Pauline17
  • Vital-Durand, Dominique18
  • And 8 more
  • 1 Department of Dermatology, Hôpital Estaing, CHU Clermont-Ferrand, Clermont-Ferrand, France. , (France)
  • 2 Department of Dermatology, Hôpital Saint-André, CHU Bordeaux, Bordeaux, France. , (France)
  • 3 Sorbonne Université, INSERM, Institut Pierre Louis d'Epidémiologie et de Santé Publique, AP-HP.Sorbonne Université, Hôpital Tenon, Département de dermatologie et allergologie, Paris, France. , (France)
  • 4 Department of Dermatology, CHU Dijon-Bourgogne, Dijon, France. , (France)
  • 5 Department of Dermatology, Hôpital Saint Eloi, CHU Montpellier, Montpellier, France. , (France)
  • 6 Department of Pneumology and Allergology, CHU Montpellier, Montpellier, France. , (France)
  • 7 Department of Dermatology, CHU Henri Mondor, Créteil, France. , (France)
  • 8 Department of Dermatology, Hôpital Larrey, CHU Toulouse, Toulouse, France. , (France)
  • 9 Department of Dermatology, CHM, Le Mans, France. , (France)
  • 10 Department of Allergology, Centre Erik Satie, CHU Rouen, Rouen, France. , (France)
  • 11 Private Dermatology Practice, Orléans, France. , (France)
  • 12 Department of Dermatology, Hôpital Jean Minjoz, CHU Besançon, Besançon, France. , (France)
  • 13 Private Dermatology Practice, Rennes, France. , (France)
  • 14 Department of Dermatology, Hôpital Jacques Monod, CH Le Havre, Montivilliers, France. , (France)
  • 15 Department of Dermatology, CHU Angers, Angers, France. , (France)
  • 16 Sorbonne Université, AP-HP, Hôpital Tenon, Département de dermatologie et allergologie, Paris, France. , (France)
  • 17 Department of Dermatology, Hôpital Nord, CHU Grenoble, La Tronche, France. , (France)
  • 18 Department of Dermatology, Hôpital Edouard Herriot, CHU Lyon, Lyon, France. , (France)
  • 19 Private Dermatology Practice, Bayonne, France. , (France)
  • 20 Department of Dermatology and Allergology, CHU Saint-Etienne, Saint Priest-en-Jarrez, France. , (France)
  • 21 Department of Allergology and Immunology, CHU Lyon Sud, Pierre Bénite, France. , (France)
  • 22 Department of Dermatology, Hôpital d'instruction des armées Sainte Anne, Toulon, France. , (France)
Published Article
Contact dermatitis
Publication Date
Jul 01, 2022
DOI: 10.1111/cod.14085
PMID: 35213760


An aqueous antiseptic containing "chlorhexidine digluconate/benzalkonium chloride/benzyl alcohol" (CBB) is widely used in France. The only previous documented study dealing with allergic contact dermatitis (ACD) to this antiseptic is one small case series in children. The French Vigilance Network for Dermatology and Allergy (REVIDAL-GERDA) has collected many cases in the last few years. To evaluate the clinical and sensitization profiles of patients diagnosed with ACD to CBB. We performed a retrospective study of patients with contact dermatitis to CBB and positive tests to CBB and/or at least one of its components. All patients had to be tested with all components of CBB. A total of 102 patients (71 adults and 31 children) were included. The lesions were extensive in 63% of patients and 55% had delayed time to diagnosis. CBB patch tests were positive in 93.8% of cases. The allergen was identified in 97% of patients, mainly benzyl alcohol in adults (81.7%) and chlorhexidine digluconate in children (54.8%). About 32.4% of the patients were sensitized to several components. CBB is a cause of ACD at all ages. The components of the antiseptic should be tested. The sensitization profile seems to be different between adults and children. © 2022 John Wiley & Sons A/S. Published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

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