Health & Spirit

Hair loss on legs has reader puzzled

By Keith Roach, M.D. on

628 Virginia Dr.

Orlando, FL 32803

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DEAR DR. ROACH: I read your recent column on nickel allergies and joint replacement. I worry that I have a nickel allergy since I break out in a red, itchy, pimply rash from contact with the back of watches, the tabs on the waistbands of jeans and the backs of earrings. Do I need to worry about getting a replacement aortic heart valve? -- T.S.

ANSWER: My advice for you is similar to what I said for other joint replacements: First, find out if you really have a nickel allergy. Your history is suggestive, so find an allergist who can do skin testing. If you do have a severe nickel allergy, I read one report of a surgeon who reported the use of a nickel-free ON-X aortic valve, so I know there are options.


Dr. Roach regrets that he is unable to answer individual letters, but will incorporate them in the column whenever possible. Readers may email questions to or request an order form of available health newsletters at 628 Virginia Dr., Orlando, FL 32803. Health newsletters may be ordered from

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