Concomitant patch test reactions to mercapto mix and mercaptobenzothiazole: Retrospective analysis from the North American contact dermatitis group, 1994-2008

Erin M. Warshaw, Srihari I. Raju, C. G. Toby Mathias, Joel G. DeKoven, Donald V. Belsito, Howard I. Maibach, James S. Taylor, Denis Sasseville, Kathryn A. Zug, Matthew J. Zirwas, Joseph F. Fowler, Vincent A. DeLeo, James G. Marks, Melanie D. Pratt, Frances J. Storrs

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Abstract

Background: Mercaptobenzothiazole (MBT) and mercapto compounds are primarily used in rubber products. Objective: This study aimed to examine concomitant-positive rates of MBT (1% pet) and the 4-part mercapto mix (MM) (1% pet). Design: This is a retrospective cross-sectional data from the North American Contact Dermatitis Group. Results: A total of 30,880 patients were patch tested to MM and MBT. There were 333 positive reactions to MM and 427 positive reactions to MBT. Ninety-eight patients were positive to MM alone, 192 to MBT alone, and 235 reacted to both. Forty-five percent (192/427) of MBT reactions would have been missed by only testing to MM, and 29%(98/333) of MM reactions would have been missed by testing to MBT alone. Most of these "missed" reactions, however, were doubtful (+/-) ormild (+) (MBT, 65%;MM, 78%), whereas most reactions in patients who reacted to both were moderate (++) and/or strong (+++) (52.3%). Gloves were the most common source. Conclusions: Mercaptobenzothiazole is the preferential screening allergen for mercapto compounds because of the following: (1) greater proportion of missed reactions with MM; (2) greater proportion of doubtful/mild reactions in the missed group for MM; and (3) in the group positive to both, the low rate (2%) of moderate/strong reactions to MM and doubtful/mild reactions to MBT as compared with the converse (21%). Mercapto mix may be useful in an auxiliary rubber series.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)321-327
Number of pages7
JournalDermatitis
Volume24
Issue number6
DOIs
StatePublished - Nov 1 2013

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All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Dermatology

Cite this

Warshaw, E. M., Raju, S. I., Toby Mathias, C. G., DeKoven, J. G., Belsito, D. V., Maibach, H. I., Taylor, J. S., Sasseville, D., Zug, K. A., Zirwas, M. J., Fowler, J. F., DeLeo, V. A., Marks, J. G., Pratt, M. D., & Storrs, F. J. (2013). Concomitant patch test reactions to mercapto mix and mercaptobenzothiazole: Retrospective analysis from the North American contact dermatitis group, 1994-2008. Dermatitis, 24(6), 321-327. https://doi.org/10.1097/DER.0b013e3182a8c1ab