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Nickel allergy

Related Terms

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Background

  • Nickel allergy occurs when the body's immune system overreacts to substances in nickel. Nickel is a hard, bright, silver-white metal that is found in soil. This metal is a common component of silver coins, belt buckles, jewelry, and many other everyday items.
  • Patients with nickel allergy typically develop a skin rash called contact dermatitis after exposure to the metal. Contact dermatitis causes the skin to become red, itchy, and swollen.
  • According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), the more exposure an individual has to nickel-containing products, the more likely the patient will become allergic to nickel. Patients can become allergic to nickel at any age.
  • There is currently no available data on the incidence rates of nickel allergy. Historically, nickel allergy has affected more women than men. Researchers believe that this is because women are more likely to get their ears pierced. Nickel is present in earrings unless the jewelry is hypoallergenic, stainless steel, solid gold, or sterling silver. However, as body piercing continues to gain popularity, an increasing number of males are reported to have nickel allergies.
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Causes

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How To Identify Nickel Products

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Risk Factors

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Symptoms

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Diagnosis

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Treatment

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Integrative Therapies

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Prevention

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Author Information

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References

Natural Standard developed the above evidence-based information based on a thorough systematic review of the available scientific articles. For comprehensive information about alternative and complementary therapies on the professional level, go to www.naturalstandard.com. Selected references are listed below.

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The information in this monograph is intended for informational purposes only, and is meant to help users better understand health concerns. Information is based on review of scientific research data, historical practice patterns, and clinical experience. This information should not be interpreted as specific medical advice. Users should consult with a qualified healthcare provider for specific questions regarding therapies, diagnosis and/or health conditions, prior to making therapeutic decisions.