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Indian Journal of Dermatology, Venereology and Leprology
Medknow Publications on behalf of The Indian Association of Dermatologists, Venereologists and Leprologists (IADVL)
ISSN: 0378-6323
EISSN: 0378-6323
Vol. 73, No. 5, 2007, pp. 330-332
Bioline Code: dv07121
Full paper language: English
Document type: Research Article
Document available free of charge

Indian Journal of Dermatology, Venereology and Leprology, Vol. 73, No. 5, 2007, pp. 330-332

 en Brief Report - Cutaneous reactions simulating erythema multiforme and Stevens Johnson syndrome due to occupational exposure to a plant-growth regulator
Inamadar, Arun C. & Palit, Aparna


Background: In India, hydrogen cyanamide (Dormex ®) is a plant growth regulator used mainly for the bud-breaking of grapevines. The use of this chemical may result in severe cutaneous reactions simulating erythema multiforme (EM), Stevens-Johnson syndrome (SJS) and toxic epidermal necrolysis (TEN).
Methods: Studies were conducted on four seasonal grapevine workers who developed severe cutaneous reactions following the unprotected use of Dormex ® (hydrogen cyanamide).
Results: Two of the patients had EM-like skin lesions and the other two developed SJS-TEN-like skin lesions. A latent period of 5-7 days existed between the contact with the chemical and the development of the skin lesions. The histopathological picture was suggestive of EM. All the patients responded to systemic steroids and antihistamines.
Conclusions: Hydrogen cyanamide may act as a hapten, initiating cytotoxic immunological attack on keratinocytes, resulting in EM- and SJS-TEN-like clinical picture. Awareness regarding such severe cutaneous reactions due to the inappropriate handling of Dormex ® is required. The use of personal protection equipments while handling agricultural chemicals is essential.

Skin reactions, Dormex ®, Hydrogen cyanamide

© Copyright 2007 Indian Journal of Dermatology, Venereology and Leprology.
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