Systemic allergic reaction and diffuse bone pain after exposure to a preparation of betamethasone

G. B. Ehret, C. Deluze, P. Dayer, J. A. Desmeules

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


Allergic reactions to corticosteroids are unexpected as they seem to contradict their pharmacodynamic action. Nevertheless, they are not infrequent, with an estimated incidence of up to 4% for cutaneous reactions. Systemic reactions are rarely reported, but their incidence might be underestimated. We report here an unusual allergic reaction to betamethasone presenting with diffuse bone pain, erythema, and bronchoconstriction, which was confirmed by a positive rechallenge in a double-blind procedure. This is the first case report of a systemic reaction to betamethasone confirmed by a positive rechallenge. An impurity in betamethasone diproprionate cannot be excluded. As this substance is frequently used in rheumatologic soft-tissue injections, it is important to recognize this potentially life-threatening side effect.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)612-614
Number of pages3
JournalEuropean Journal of Internal Medicine
Issue number8
StatePublished - Dec 2005


  • Allergy
  • Betamethasone
  • Pain
  • Systemic

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Internal Medicine


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