Author(s): Scherer K, Studer W, Figueiredo V, Bircher AJ
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Abstract BACKGROUND: Blue dyes used for lymphatic mapping in sentinel lymph node biopsy cause intraoperative anaphylactic reactions in up to 2.7\% of patients. With increasing implementation of this technique, the incidence of anaphylaxis to these dyes can be expected to increase. In the literature, the chemically often unrelated and inconsistently designated dyes have been confused, adding to other inconsistencies in the nomenclature. OBJECTIVE: To demonstrate the nomenclature, chemical and physiologic differences, and allergenicity of the various blue dyes used in a medical context. METHODS: We describe a patient with an intraoperative grade IV anaphylactic reaction to isosulfan blue. Immediate-type hypersensitivity was proved by positive skin test reactions and CD63 expression to isosulfan blue and cross-reactivity to patent blue V. RESULTS: A review of the literature clarified the exact nomenclature of the blue dyes and the possible pitfalls of confusing nomenclature in the context of structurally closely related dyes with different allergenic properties. For the detection of type I hypersensitivity, intracutaneous tests are valuable tools. An IgE-mediated mechanism has been shown recently. In most cases, sensitization exists without known previous exposure in a medical context. This may be due to the widespread use of such dyes in objects of everyday life. Preoperative antiallergic medication use does not prevent anaphylactic reactions but apparently reduces their severity. CONCLUSION: For better comparison and precision, the Chemical Abstracts Service number of the respective dye should always be given.
This article was published in Ann Allergy Asthma Immunol
and referenced in Journal of Clinical Toxicology