Back in 2008 we reported that The British Association of Dermatologists was advising doctors to be aware of an allergic skin disorder caused by mobile phones. The condition was called 'mobile phone dermatitis' and was caused when nickel-allergic people held certain mobile phones to their face or ear for long periods of time. Nickel is the most common 'contact' allergy in the UK and is found in the 'metallic' casing or buttons of some mobile phones.
The condition is now back in the news, with the current edition of the Australasian Journal of Dermatology carrying a report of a man suffering from facial dermatitis. Tests confirmed 'mobile phone contact dermatitis' from nickel contained in the phone casing. The report's authors, Hugh Roberts and Bruce Tate from the Skin and Cancer Foundation in Australia, say the trend towards metallic mobile phone casings and the high incidence of nickel sensitization in the community means the incidence of mobile phone contact dermatitis is likely to increase.