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Regular Departments
August 1973

Resorcinol Monobenzoate, Steering Wheels, Peruvian Balsam

Author Affiliations

Richmond, Va

Arch Dermatol. 1973;108(2):278. doi:10.1001/archderm.1973.01620230070034

To the Editor.—  Resorcinol monobenzoate (RMB) has recently been described as a cause of allergic contact dermatitis in three patients who had been in close contact with cellulose ester plastics.1 Four additional cases have been seen in a six-month period. The most dramatic example was a case of intractable palmar eczema of over a year's duration. A 69-year-old white man was patch test-positive to his car steering wheel, RMB, and Peruvian balsam. The plastic manufacturer confirmed the existence of RMB in the steering wheel. The patient's hands have remained clear since a protective covering was placed over the steering wheel.This patient's problem occurred 3 months after purchasing a 1971 automobile. Steering wheels made of cellulose ester plastic after 1971 should not contain RMB. There are other benzoates described in the literature as ultraviolet inhibitors, but I have not determined their relationship to RMB or the extent of their

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