Cell Phones Also Annoy Your Skin

'Mobile phone dermatitis' could explain mysterious facial rashes
By Harry Kimball,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 16, 2008 2:32 PM CDT
Does French President Nicolas Sarkozy have mobile phone dermatitis? It's a dummy.   (AP Photo)
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(Newser) – Cell phones won’t melt your brain, but they do cause “mobile phone dermatitis,” Reuters reports. A British dermatological organization is cautioning doctors to consider allergy-causing nickel found on many phones in cases of “a rash on the cheek or ear that cannot otherwise be explained.” The condition afflicts excessive cell-phone users, and possibly the fingers of inveterate texters.

Nickel is often the culprit in contact rashes, and a study found the metal in almost half of popular phones. A case of dermatitis from phone use causes a red, itchy rash wherever the user allows the handset to touch her skin, be it ear or cheek. The British group said many doctors had no idea such devices might cause rashes.