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July 1997

Self-application of a Protective CreamPitfalls of Occupational Skin Protection

Author Affiliations

From the Department of Dermatology, University Hospital, Zürich, Switzerland (Drs Wigger-Alberti and Elsner and Mr Maraffio), and Turimed AG, Wallisellen, Switzerland (Dr Wernli).

Arch Dermatol. 1997;133(7):861-864. doi:10.1001/archderm.1997.03890430077010

Objectives:  To determine if a protective cream (PC) is adequately applied to the hands by workers in several occupations and to quantify what areas are covered or missed.

Design:  Prospective diagnostic study.

Settings:  Metalworking factory, construction sites, and university hospital.

Participants:  One hundred fifty healthy volunteers (50 from each setting) were recruited for a questionnaire interview and typical self-application of a PC.

Intervention:  None.

Main Outcome Measure:  Percentage of sufficient cover with PC as assessed with fluorescence under Wood light.

Results:  Many areas were skipped when viewed under Wood light. The application of PC was incomplete, especially on the dorsal aspects of the hands. Conclusion: Individuals should be made aware of the most commonly missed regions to ensure complete skin protection. This simple method is a useful adjunct to quantify self-application and in worker education.Arch Dermatol. 1997;133:861-864