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Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology
Volume 44, n° 4
pages 599-602 (avril 2001)
Doi : 10.1067/mjd.2001.112223
accepted : 16 August 2000
Association of reversible alopecia with occupational topical exposure to common borax-containing solutions
 

William S. Beckett, MD, Roger Oskvig, MD, Mary Ellen Gaynor, RN, COHN, Mark H. Goldgeier, MD
Departments of Environmental Medicine (Occupational Medicine Division), Internal Medicine and Dermatology, and Finger Lakes Occupational Health Services, University of Rochester School of Medicine and Dentistry. Rochester, New York 

Abstract

Boron is widely used in industrial materials, most frequently as the salt borax. Systemic exposure (eg, ingestion) to boron in boric acid been associated with reversible toxic alopecia among other manifestations. There is scant clinical literature on alopecia caused by topical exposure to boron. We observed a series of 3 patients in 2 workplaces who suffered reversible alopecia from cutaneous boron exposure. The scalp alopecia was global in 1 patient and patchy in 2 patients. Alopecia was completely reversed by elimination or reduction of exposure to boron-containing materials in all 3 patients. We conclude that occupational topical exposure to boron in solutions may cause reversible alopecia. (J Am Acad Dermatol 2001;44:599-602.)

The full text of this article is available in PDF format.

 Supported in part by the New York State Department of Health Network of Occupational Health Clinics.
 Reprint requests: William S. Beckett, MD, Environmental Medicine, Box EHSC, University of Rochester School of Medicine and Dentistry, 575 Elmwood Ave, Rochester, NY 14642.
 J Am Acad Dermatol 2001;44:599-602



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