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Article |

Pulmonary Disease and Hair-Spray Polymers: A Disputed Relationship

Matthew J. Brunner, MD; Robert P. Giovacchini, PhD; John P. Wyatt, MD; Frank E. Dunlap, MD; Joseph C. Calandra, MD
JAMA. 1963;184(11):851-857. doi:10.1001/jama.1963.03700240043006.
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Massive exposure of experimental animals to a vinylalkylether/maleic ester copolymer hair spray by inhalation did not produce granulomatous disease as described in alleged human cases. Intratracheal instillation of hair-spray solids also failed to reproduce the syndrome. In alleged cases of hair-spray thesaurosis, the connecting link was the presence of intracytoplasmic granules stained by the periodic acid-Schiff method and said to be particles of hair-spray resin. However, similar granules were found in a number of diverse pulmonary disorders in patients who had not been exposed to hair sprays, and the general staining characteristics of several hair-spray polymers did not correspond with those of the granules found in claimed instances of thesaurosis.


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