Mechanisms of Contact dermatitis:Such drugs or chemicals exerted on the skin behave like haptens.Whenever these haptens join with skin proteins, that act as carrier they form hapten-carrier complex. Antigen presenting cells [i.e., APC] carry this hapten-carrier complex to the lymphatics, from lymphatics they go to the regional lymph nodes.In lymph nodes the antigen representing cells present the hapten-carrier complex to the T-cells [CD4T cells]. Such CD4 T cells identify the hapten-carrier complex and discharge lymphokines or interleukins.Such interleukins activate the T-cells and macrophages that in turn degrade the lesions differing from macules and papules to vesicles that breakdown leaving behind raw weeping regions typical of acute eczematous dermatitis. Such reactions emerge after 24 to 48 hours. This is termed as contact dermatitis.
This hypersensitivity can be identified through Patch Test.
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