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October 1974

Contact Dermatitis From Stearyl Alcohol and Propylene Glycol-Reply

Author Affiliations


Arch Dermatol. 1974;110(4):636. doi:10.1001/archderm.1974.01630100084026

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To the Editor.—  On Dr. Fisher's suggestion, we have recently patch tested our patient with highly purified oleyl alcohol and highly purified panthenol (pantothenyl alcohol). At the same time, we retested the patient with commercial stearyl alcohol (which contains 6% impurities) and with high-grade stearyl alcohol (which contains 1% impurities).The only positive reaction was to commercial stearyl alcohol (30% in petrolatum), which produced an intensely pruritic, inflammatory vesicular reaction. No reaction was produced in this patient by any of the following materials: 30% high-grade stearyl alcohol (99% pure) in petrolatum; 30% high-grade oleyl alcohol (99% pure) in petrolatum; or 30% high-grade panthenol (99% pure) in petrolatum. Five young women served as controls and had negative reactions to patch tests with the commercial stearyl alcohol, the high-grade oleyl alcohol, and the high-grade panthenol.In 1973, commercial stearyl alcohol (30% in petrolatum) had produced a 2+ (mild) reaction, whereas highgrade stearyl

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