Patch-testing practices of American Contact Dermatitis Society members: A cross-sectional survey

Erin M Warshaw, Jane Blowers Moore, David B Nelson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

22 Scopus citations


Background: Patch testing is an example of how medicine blends art and science, resulting in differences among practitioners in methods of history taking, application of patch tests, and interpretation of results. Objective: To evaluate the "art" of patch testing (specifically, the prevalence of Thin-Layer Rapid Use Epicutaneous (T.R.U.E.) TEST use, photopatch testing, patch testing to dust mites, and immediate testing for latex allergy) as practiced by American Contact Dermatitis Society (ACDS) members and to compare the results of this survey with those of similar studies among United States dermatologists and allergists. Methods: A cross-sectional survey of all 322 members of the ACDS. Results: The response rate was 46%. The largest proportions of respondents were male, had practiced for 11 to 20 years, were located in the northeast United States, and were in private practice. Forty percent of respondents used T.R.U.E. TEST, and 65% performed photopatch testing. Seventy percent of respondents evaluated patients for latex allergy, and 15% patch-tested to dust mites. Conclusions: As expected, respondents reported significantly higher prevalences of patch testing, photopatch testing, and evaluation for latex allergy than did United States dermatologists generally. Respondents reported significantly lower prevalences of single patch-test readings and use of T.R.U.E. TEST than did either general United States dermatologists or general United States allergists.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)5-11
Number of pages7
JournalAmerican Journal of Contact Dermatitis
Issue number1
StatePublished - Mar 2003


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