Artificial nails made of acrylic materials have been recently introduced on the market for cosmetic purposes. The Substances utilized are similar to those used by dentists and are known to cause allergic contact dermatitis in sensitized persons.
Dentists use acrylic materials in two different forms: polymerized by heat and self-cured. The self-cured materials are used in the relining of dentures, in orthodontic work, and in filling of cavities. These self-cured materials result from a mixture of methyl methacrylate monomer, a liquid, and polymethyl methacrylate, a powder, with an organic peroxide and an accelerator. They polymerize at room temperature, but polymerization is not complete, resulting in a high residual monomer content. This is worthy of note, since Fischer1 has shown that the liquid monomer is the sensitizing agent responsible for allergic contact type of eczematous reactions on the skin and mucous membranes.
In the preparation of dentures the powder