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August 1963

Cutaneous Effects of Household Synthetic Detergents and Soaps

Author Affiliations


Present addresses: R. R. Suskind: Division of Environmental Medicine, University of Oregon Medical School, Portland 1, Ore. M. M. Meister: 1341 W. Wisconsin Ave, Milwaukee 3. S. R. Scheen: 1169 Eastern Parkway, Louisville. D. J. A. Rebello: Khandelwal Bhuvan, 166 Dadabhai Naoroji Rd, Bombay 1, India.

From the Department of Dermatology, College of Medicine, University of Cincinnati.

Arch Dermatol. 1963;88(2):117-124. doi:10.1001/archderm.1963.01590200005001

Patients with a variety of hand dermatoses were removed from their work milieu, hospitalized, and their hands exposed exclusively to repeated daily immersion in two alkaline household washing products. The majority of subjects improved during the test. It was observed that the response of the hand immersed in the washing product paralleled the response of the control hand, which was exposed to tap water of the same temperature. From these observations it was concluded that in household usage soap or synthetic detergent immersion alone may not be the primary provoking stimulus in housewives' dermatitis. The role of other critical factors such as temperature and humidity are discussed.