SAN FRANCISCO, July 14 Nickel in a
first-generation iPad likely triggered an allergic skin reaction
in an 11-year-old boy, a case that highlights an increasingly
common condition linked to the rapid adoption of consumer
electronics, according to a study published by the American
Academy of Pediatrics on Monday.
Dr Sharon Jacob and Dr Shehla Admani, who are both
dermatologists, studied severe skin rashes afflicting the
unidentified 11-year-old boy for more than six months, before
discovering that his daily use of an Apple Inc iPad may
have brought on the condition.
The boy's iPad, among the first versions of the device
launched in 2010, tested positive for nickel, they said. The
boy's dermatitis improved significantly after he started using a
tablet case and began avoiding known sources of nickel in
general, the study's authors said.
The dermatologists said a cover only provides coverage of
the screen and leaves the back of the device exposed.
The report was the latest in a series of studies that have
linked nickel content in electronics such as computers and
smartphones to allergic reactions. Nickel is a common
It's unclear if all iPads contain nickel, or just the first
generation of the device, such as the boy's. The researchers
said other common sources of nickel exposure for children
included ear piercings, clothing fasteners, dental work - which
people come into contact with constantly - laptops, cell phones
Apple defended the safety of its products.
"We have found that allergies like the one reported in this
case are extremely rare," the company said in a statement.
"Apple products are made from the highest quality materials and
meet the same strict standards set for jewelry by both the U.S.
Consumer Safety Product Commission and their counterparts in
"We rigorously test our products to make sure they are safe
for all our customers," it said.
Jacob and Admani wrote that this was the first time an iPad
had been reported as a potential source of nickel
"sensitization" in children.
"With the increasing prevalence of nickel allergy in the
pediatric population, it is important for clinicians to continue
to consider metallic-appearing electronics and personal effects
as potential sources of nickel exposure," the dermatologists
said in the study.
(Reporting by San Francisco newsroom; Editing by Leslie Adler)