ASK THE ALLERGISTA: Do you have any tips for living with an extreme nickel allergy?

Testing for nickel by patch testing (T.R.U.E.) is very reliable for nickel sensitivity. Ask your doctor about whether or not you would benefit.

The Allergista



AHhhhhhhh! I apparently have an extreme allergy to nickel. Not only touching it but eating foods with high nickel content. I am looking for nickel free everyday products such as disposable razors, etc. If you have any helpful ways for me to deal with this allergy they would be much appreciated.



Ugh… nickel allergy. Nickel is eeeverywhere! Nickel is my most extreme allergy. If I touch it, my skin starts to react in less than 10 minutes and will bubble. It’s super itchy as well. When it comes to nickel, here are some tips:

  1. Copy all your house keys and any key you possibly can and choose the new kind of keys that are coated with a design all over the entire key. Also, put plastic key covers over the tops of all your keys
  2. To avoid metal doorknobs and handles, keep a bandana (I cut mine…

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Ask The Allergista: Is surgical steel nickel-free?

The Allergista


Hi Jennifer! I’m looking for earrings (nickel free). I find I must have an allergy to nickel. Would you happen to have any suggestions? I see some people on Etsy have surgical steel posts, but I’m a bit skeptical to get from individual vs. a company that verifies allergen free.

Also, thanks for listing all of your eczema resources. I have eczema, both my children have eczema and my 4 year old daughter has anaphylaxis to peanut. So, we are always looking for less harsh skin products and clothing. Thanks for sharing your story. You site is AMAZING. Thank you again.


Hi there! And thank you thank you thank you! You are so incredibly welcome.

I would definitely NOT purchase surgical steel. I know it sounds like a good idea to a lot of people, but I’ve had HORRIBLE reactions to surgical steel posts before. ALWAYS buy sterling…

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A Penny for your Thoughts!

Nickel allergy

Nickel allergy very common

can result in both cutaneous and systemic manifestations, and can range from mild to severe symptoms. A severe form of this allergy is the Systemic nickel allergy syndrome, clinically characterized by cutaneous manifestations (contact dermatitis, pompholyx, hand dermatitis dyshydrosis, urticaria) with a chronic course and systemic symptoms (headache, asthenia, itching, and gastrointestinal disorders related to histopathological alterations of gastrointestinal mucosa, borderline with celiac disease). This review aims to briefly update the reader on past and current therapies for nickel contact allergy.

Nickel is the main sensitizer; its prevalence varies from 4.0 to 13.1% in different countries and is still increasing. Nickel allergy is more common among women than among men (17% and 3%, respectively). This difference is due to different rates of exposure of skin to this substance; such exposure (from jewelry, leathers, etc) is more frequent among women.  Makes sense, can I go shopping now! Continue reading

#allergy, #conditions-and-diseases, #contact-dermatitis, #eczema, #health, #puva-therapy, #skin-disorders, #ultraviolet

Metal implants may cause more problems!

In allergy, I am often asked to evaluate a patient for “metal allergy”. This is from British investigators cautioning against the use of metal implants. They found metal components in the blood stream of patients with implants–this is where the sensitization comes from. Click on the link for the full article. 1

#dental-implant, #hip-replacement, #metal-allergy