Excipients in Oral Antihistamines Can Perpetuate Allergic Contact Dermatitis

UMMS Affiliation

Department of Medicine, Division of Dermatology; Department of Pediatrics

Publication Date


Document Type

Case Study


Chemical Actions and Uses | Dermatology | Immune System Diseases | Organic Chemicals | Pediatrics | Pharmaceutical Preparations | Skin and Connective Tissue Diseases | Therapeutics


Propylene glycol is a well-documented causative agent of allergic contact dermatitis (ACD). It is also reported to cause systemic dermatitis after ingestion of foods or medicines containing it and after intravenous injection of a medicine with propylene glycol in its base. We describe two adolescents with sensitivity to propylene glycol confirmed by patch testing whose dermatitis improved dramatically after cessation of oral antihistamines containing propylene glycol. We report these cases to alert providers to the potential for worsening of ACD due to systemic exposure to propylene glycol in patients with a cutaneous sensitivity to the allergen.

DOI of Published Version



Pediatr Dermatol. 2015 Nov-Dec;32(6):e242-4. doi: 10.1111/pde.12668. Epub 2015 Sep 4. Link to article on publisher's site

Journal/Book/Conference Title

Pediatric dermatology

Related Resources

Link to Article in PubMed

PubMed ID