A clinical trial of oral hyposensitization in systemic allergy to nickel

Eleonora Nucera, Domenico Schiavino, Cristiana Alonzi, Alessandro Buonomo, Emanuela Pollastrini, Chiara Roncallo, Tiziana Maria Angela De Pasquale, Carla Lombardo, Giuseppe La Torre, Vito Sabato, Valentina Pecora, Giampiero Patriarca

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39 Citations (Scopus)


Nickel allergy is the most common contact allergy. Some nickel-sensitive patients present systemic (cutaneous and/or digestive) symptoms related to the ingestion of high nickel-content foods, which significantly improve after a specific low nickel-content diet. The etiopathogenetic role of nickel in the genesis of systemic disorders is, furthermore, demonstrated by the relapse of previous contact lesions, appearance of widespread eczema and generalized urticaria-like lesions after oral nickel challenge test. The aim of this study is to investigate the safety and efficacy of a specific oral hyposensitization to nickel in patients with both local contact disorders and systemic symptoms after the ingestion of nickel-containing foods. Inclusion criteria for the recruitment of these patients were (other than a positive patch test) a benefit higher than 80% from a low nickel-content diet and a positive oral challenge with nickel. Based on the previous experiences, our group adopted a therapeutic protocol by using increasing oral doses of nickel sulfate associated to an elimination diet. Results have been excellent: this treatment has been effective in inducing clinical tolerance to nickel-containing foods, with a low incidence of side effects (gastric pyrosis, itching erythema).
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)593-600
Number of pages8
JournalInternational Journal of Immunopathology and Pharmacology
Publication statusPublished - 2006


  • nickel


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