Author(s): Mallon E, Powell S, Mortimer P, Ryan TJ
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Abstract Patients with chronic lymphoedema are prone to develop chronic infections and various tumours in the lymphoedematous limb, suggesting that regional immune surveillance is impaired. To test the hypothesis that cutaneous cell-mediated immunity is impaired, 35 women with postmastectomy lymphoedema were investigated using dinitrochlorobenzene to test the afferent and efferent loops of the allergic contact immune response. The results support the role of lymphatics as an important component of the immune response to allergens by the demonstration of impairment of both the afferent and efferent loops of the allergic contact dermatitis reaction, and confirm that there is suppression of immune competence in a lymphoedematous limb.
This article was published in Br J Dermatol
and referenced in Journal of Clinical & Cellular Immunology