Limonene and linalool are among the most common fragrance terpenes used in everyday products. They are pre-haptens, forming hydroperoxides (Lim-OOHs, Lin-OOHs) upon oxidation and inducing frequent positive patch test reactions in patients with dermatitis, and yet they are not routinely tested in Europe. This review evaluates current patch testing with Lim-OOHs and Lin-OOHs by asking whether hydroperoxide patch testing is warranted, examining the difficulties or challenges related to reading and interpreting hydroperoxide patch test results with currently available material, and assessing their relevance. Studies are increasingly pointing to high percentages of positive reactions in patients consecutively patch tested with these oxidized products. An association between a positive clinical history and a strong patch test reaction has been described, but problems with doubtful/irritant reactions have also been reported. Considering the high frequency of relevant positive reactions, the incorporation of Lim-OOHs 0.3% and Lin-OOHs 1% in the baseline series may be justified. Since exposure, sensitization, and elicitation limits of Lim-OOHs and Lin-OOHs in the products still need to be better determined, an assessment of previous exposure, possible sensitizations, and reactions may help to improve the clinical assessment.
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