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June 1979

Hearing Aid Dermatitis

Author Affiliations


Richmond, Va

Arch Dermatol. 1979;115(6):676. doi:10.1001/archderm.1979.04010060002008

To the Editor.—  Guill and Odom recently described a woman in whom allergic contact dermatitis developed from an acrylic plastic hearing aid (Arch Dermatol 114:1050-1051, 1978). They demonstrated that the allergen was methyl methacrylate. The cold-curing polymerization process left enough residual monomer to produce dermatitis when the plastic contacted the skin of the ear. Heat curing produced "complete" polymerization, and substitution of a heat-cured hearing aid for the cold-cured one eliminated the dermatitis.The authors have presented an excellent teaching point, and have solved a clinical problem by the pure academic method of substituting a completely polymerized product. The teaching and practical value of this substitution deserves emphasis.For some similar patients, it is conceivable that the curing techniques used in the manufacturing process of certain hearing aids might be unknown. For these patients, we would like to suggest substitution of a cellulose ester plastic. Cellulose ester plastics do not

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