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To the Editor:—The article by J. Q. Gant Jr., "A Clinical Application of a Hydrophilic Ointment Base" (A. M. A. Arch. Dermat.71:688 [June] 1955), consists of a discussion of the properties of oil-in-water emulsions and a hypothesis of their assumed clinical action.
Toward the end of this paper, almost in parenthesis, the statement was made that application of such hydrophilic ointment base in 176, presumably consecutive, cases of primary irritant dermatitis due to detergents, resulted in relief of symptoms within five days "in all cases" and "healing in all cases" [italics mine]. The only corroboration of this statement consists of three very incomplete case reports, at least two of which suggest the diagnosis of allergic contact sensitization to hand lotions or cleansing fluids. This remarkable therapeutic result is so much at variance with our experiences in the use of absorption bases in general, the specific product