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August 18, 1962


JAMA. 1962;181(7):632. doi:10.1001/jama.1962.03050330062017

Hair sprays represent a group of cosmetics currently under suspicion for their toxicologic properties. In 1958, Bergmann and associates1 reported 2 cases of thesaurosis, or storage disease, that followed inhalation of hair spray. These observations were contrary to the findings in a number of animal studies.

Several disabling pulmonary syndromes have been attributed to inhalation of hair sprays. One of these is thesaurosis which has been characterized through biopsy as a pulmonary granulomatosis histologically indistinguishable from Boeck's sarcoidosis. In this issue of The Journal (p. 635) Schepers examines the close clinical and histologic similarity between sarcoidosis and thesaurosis. The question is raised of whether some cases of alleged thesaurosis may not be instances of pulmonary sarcoidosis coincidental to exposure to cosmetic hair sprays. Intracellular granules stainable by periodic acid-Schiff reagent have been considered the result of exposure to polyvinyl pyrrolidone or some other component of hair spray. However, Schepers