Epidemiology

Kanerva et al. (2,3) gathered statistical data on occupational contact urticaria in Finland. The incidence more than doubled from 89 reported cases in 1989 to 194 cases in 1994. From 1990 to 1994, a total of 815 cases was reported. The most common causes were, in decreasing order, cow dander, natural rubber latex (NRL), and flour/grains/feed. These three groups comprised 79% of all cases. Reflecting this, the most affected occupations (per 100,000 workers) were bakers, processed food preparers, and dental assistants, in decreasing order. Contact urticaria, therefore, is a common problem that may affect many people in the course of their daily lives.

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