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August 1953

AUTOSENSITIZATION DERMATITIS Discussion and Protocol of an Experiment

Author Affiliations


AMA Arch Derm Syphilol. 1953;68(2):178-186. doi:10.1001/archderm.1953.01540080062007

THE CONCEPT of autosensitization, whereby a person becomes sensitized in one or more of his organs to a substance elaborated from his own tissue proteins, has been a stimulating subject for investigation in the past decade.

Whitfield1 was probably the first to apply this concept to the field of dermatology. In 1921, he reported the cases of two patients in whom generalized toxic eruptions appeared approximately 10 days after the occurrence of traumatic hematomas. A generalized papular, urticarial eruption developed in a third patient 11 days after the acute exacerbation of a dermatitis of the legs. In another patient, a red-streaked urticaria wheal developed whenever serum from a vesiculobullous eczema of the legs came in contact with normal areas of the skin. For these peculiar phenomena, Whitfield coined the term ``autosensitization.''

In 1929, Dennie, McBride, and Davis2 noted the occurrence of a generalized exfoliative dermatitis

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