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January 12, 1963

Contact Dermatitis from "Scotchgard," A Stain Repellent for Fabrics: Report of a Case

Author Affiliations

Salt Lake City
From the departments of medicine and pharmacology, University of Utah College of Medicine.

JAMA. 1963;183(2):136-137. doi:10.1001/jama.1963.63700020031021

ONE OF US (L.S.G.) recently sustained a severe contact dermatitis from the wearing of slacks treated with "Scotchgard,"* a fluorocarbon-containing formulation designed to impart stain and water repellency to cloth used for garments, furniture covers, and similar items. We are unaware of any report in the medical literature concerning untoward dermatological effects from this product, and the manufacturer has informed us that, to date, they have not received complaints of this nature.1 Since Scotchgard-treated fabrics are now widely sold, it was thought important to call the attention of the medical profession to the possibility that contact with such fabrics can cause dermatitis. In the present case, Scotchgard was proved to be the offending agent, and the cloth itself and the dye were eliminated as causal factors.

The patient wore a new pair of Scotchgardtreated slacks for 4 days. About 4 days later, the dorsal surfaces of the hands began