American Contact Dermatitis Society (ACDS)

Message from the President

Dear ACDS Member,

It is my honor to write my first message as the ACDS President and it gives me great pleasure to serve such a strong, committed group of physicians and providers: members of the American Contact Dermatitis Society.

I want to give a heartfelt thank you to Dr. Amber Atwater for her strong and constant leadership these past two years; along with the outgoing executive and board members: Drs. Sharon Jacob, Cory Dunnick, Brian Machler, Jenny Murase and Peggy Wu. Despite the many challenges the Society has faced over the last year, this team has helped the Society remain strong and relevant.

The ACDS 32nd Annual Meeting was held virtually on March 17-18, 2021. We had over 400 people register for the online content – a record attendance! Access to the content is still available through June 15, and offers up to 8.25 CME credits. If you have not yet registered, you can do so by clicking here.  Please also extend a huge congratulations to the winners of the Alexander A. Fisher Resident Awards, Fran Storrs Poster Awards and the Contact Allergen Bee as listed below.

Despite the limitations on our ability to meet in person this year, ACDS has continued to offer opportunities to engage our membership. Our virtual events have helped our members stay connected, and they are pretty fantastic! Be sure to check out our next virtual event, which is scheduled in May! NEW THIS YEAR: Check out our select virtual events offering Free CME for all ACDS members! Registration is required.

The CAMP 2.0 committee is working hard on producing a more user-friendly interface with improved functionality for both you and your patients. It will feature more products, easier allergen searches and enhanced patient educational handouts. Watch for more information coming soon, with an anticipated rollout in Fall of 2021.

It is my hope that you, our members, have had every opportunity to stay healthy and happy this year.

If you have member news or information you would like highlighted in a future ACDS Newsletter, please email it to


Douglas L. Powell, MD

Facebook: @ACDSDermatitis @DermatitisJournal
Instagram: ACDS_Dermatitis
Twitter: @ACDS_Dermatitis @dermatitisJrnl

Inside this Issue


Meet your new ACDS Leadership

The ACDS Board of Directors is the fiduciary body, responsible for governance of the ACDS and stewardship of its assets. It is empowered to act on behalf of the membership within the framework of the organization's bylaws and is legally, ethically, and morally responsible for performing its functions.

We are excited to announce the results of the 2021 Board of Directors election. Congratulations to the below board members. Please join us in congratulating them on this great honor.

2021 Executive Members

Jennifer K. Chen, MD
Stanford, CA

Vice President
Alison Ehrlich, MD MHS
Washington, D.C.

Kalman Watsky, MD
New Haven, CT
*Board Appointed

2021 Board of Directors

Brandon Adler, MD

Los Angeles, CA

Alexandra Flamm, MD

Hershey, PA

Kari L. Martin, MD

Columbia, MO

Thank you to the following for their leadership over the past few years. We appreciate your service!

Amber Reck Atwater, MD

Durham, NC

Sharon Jacob, MD

Loma Linda, CA

Cory Dunnick, MD

Denver, CO

Brian Machler, MD

Florham Park, NJ

Jenny Murase, MD

Cupertino, CA

Peggy Wu, MD

Sacramento, CA

For a complete list of the Board of Directors, please click here.

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ACDS 32nd Annual Meeting
Content Available Through June 15th!

The virtual ACDS 32nd Annual Meeting was a great success! Learn more about the great presentations, posters and exhibitors that are available for on-demand viewing until June 15th.

It's Not Too Late - Register Today and Gain Access!

ACDS members - $150
Non-member physicians - $175
Nurse/PA - $100
Residents/Students - Free

Click Here to Register!

Learn more about the educational content by clicking the button below.

Congratulations to the Below Award Recipients!

2021 Alexander A. Fisher Resident Award

The Alexander A. Fisher Resident Award is presented to the best oral presentation by a resident or medical student at the Scientific Session of the ACDS Annual Meeting.

  • Gold - Characterization of Residual Facial Dermatitis on Dupilumab (DFD): A Retrospective Chart Review to Delineate the Potential Role of Expanded Series Patch Testing – Alyssa G. Ashbaugh
  • Silver -  Patterns of Allergic Contact Dermatitis in African Americans and Caucasians in a Major Metropolitan Area over a Ten-Year Period - Vaibhav S. Garg
  • Bronze – Formaldehyde Release from Electronic Cigarette Liquid (E-Liquid) - Jenna L. Ruggiero, BS

2021 Fran Storrs Poster Award

The Fran Storrs Poster Award is presented to the top three research/review posters at the Scientific Session of the ACDS Annual Meeting.

  • Gold - Establishing Consensus on the treatment of Toxicodendron Dermatitis - Melisa Butt, MPH
  • Silver - Prevalence and Trend of Allergen Sensitization in Patients with Nummular Eczema Referred for Patch Testing, North American Contact Dermatitis Group Data, 2001-2016 - Alexander Hou
  • Bronze - Healthcare Workers and Occupational Contact Dermatitis - D. Linn Holness, MD MHSc

2021 Contact Allergen Bee Winners

All ACDS Annual Meeting attendees had an opportunity to participate in the popular Contact Allergen Bee sponsored by the ACDS Dermatitis Journal. Congrats to our winners!

  • Practicing Physicians - Brandon Adler, MD
  • Residents - Araya Zaesim MD
  • Medical Students - Rob Shaver, BS
  • Professional Affiliates - Kara Mudd, PA-C

ACDS 2021 Presidential Citations

The ACDS Presidential Awards are selected annually by the American Contact Dermatitis Society (ACDS) President, and is presented to individuals who have made significant contributions to the Society and the field of contact dermatitis over the last several years.

The following list represents ACDS 2021 Presidential Award recipients. Congratulations and thank you for your contributions to the Society.

  • Nicole Burkemper, MD - In recognition of Chairing the ACDS 2020 Annual Meeting Planning Committee
  • MariPaz Castanedo, MD - In recognition of Co-Chairing the ACDS Diversity, Equity and Healthcare Disparities Task Force
  • Jennifer Chen, MD - In recognition of work performed on the ACDS Education Committee
  • Ponciano "Chito" Cruz, MD - In recognition of service as ACDS Dermatitis Editor-in-Chief 1998-2021
  • Anton de Groot, MD PhD - In recognition of contributions to the Society
  • Cory Dunnick, MD - In recognition of exemplary service to the Society
    ACDS Secretary/Treasurer – 2017-2021
  • Golara Honari, MD - In recognition of Chairing the ACDS 2021 Annual Meeting Planning Committee
  • Sara Hylwa, MD - In recognition of work performed on ACDS CAMP 2.0
  • Sharon Jacob, MD - In recognition of exemplary service to the Society
    ACDS President-Elect – 2015-2017
    ACDS President – 2017-2019
    ACDS Immediate Past President – 2019-2021
  • Marjorie Montanez-Wiscovich, MD PhD - In recognition of Co-Chairing the ACDS Diversity, Equity and Healthcare Disparities Task Force
  • Margo Reeder, MD - In recognition of work performed on ACDS CAMP 2.0
  • Michael Sheehan, MD - In recognition of work performed on the ACDS Dermatitis Journal Retreat
  • JiaDe "Jeff" Yu, MD - In recognition of work performed on ACDS CAMP 2.0 and the ACDS Virtual Educational Sessions
  • Erin Warshaw, MD - In recognition of work performed on the ACDS Virtual Educational Sessions
  • Peggy Wu, MD - In recognition of Co-Chairing the ACDS Diversity, Equity and Healthcare Disparities Task Force

For a complete list of all award winners, please visit our website.

Thank you to our Sponsors!

ACDS wishes to thank the following sponsors for their generous support of the ACDS 32nd Annual Meeting.



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ACDS Member Highlight

ACDS is pleased to announce that Ponciano (Chito) D. Cruz, Jr., MD has been awarded Honorary Membership status within the Society for his vast contributions to ACDS and and the Dermatitis Journal.

Dr. Cruz served as Editor-in-Chief of the ACDS’s Journal from 1999 to 2020. During his tenure, the original American Journal of Contact Dermatitis became Dermatitis with a purview expanding beyond contact dermatitis to include atopic, occupational, and drug dermatitis, and a growing family of global societies that called it home (NACDG, ECDRG, ICDRG, SIDAPA). Dr. Cruz’s editorship culminated in Dermatitis achieving its highest Impact Factor (3.988) and a rank of 8th among 68 journals in dermatology.

At the ACDS, Dr. Cruz served on the Board of Directors and on several committees (Long-range Planning, Nominations, Publications, Scientific Program, Strategic Planning); his notoriety included creation of the Contact Allergen Bee.

Dr. Cruz resides in Dallas, Texas where he serves on faculty at The University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center as Distinguished Professor, Endowed Chair in honor of Paul Bergstresser, Residency Program Director, and Vice Chair of the Department of Dermatology. He is also Chief of Dermatology at the North Texas VA Medical Center.

He served as President of the Society for Investigative Dermatology and the Photomedicine Society, and founded the Dermatology Teachers Exchange Group. He has served on several editorial boards and NIH study sections, has been a consistent recipient of research grant awards from the NIH, DVA, DOD, and CPRIT, and is the author of over 200 peer-reviewed publications.

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2020 ACDS Dermatitis Article of the Year

Each year, the ACDS Editorial/Publications Committee recognizes the top Dermatitis articles published in the previous calendar year. Eligible articles include original reviews and studies from the six print issues published within the previous calendar year. Awards are based on scientific contribution; clinical significance and impact on clinical practice and patient care; and innovation and evidence-based reasoning.

It is with great pleasure that ACDS would like to announce the 2020 Dermatitis Articles of the Year. Open access is granted until July 1st. Thank you to all the authors that contributed.

2020 Dermatitis Article of the Year

Accuracy of Product Ingredient Labeling: Comparing Drugstore Products With Online Databases and Online Retailers

Jeanette R. Comstock, MD, and Margo J. Reeder, MD
Dermatitis. 31(2):106-111, March/April 2020

2nd Place Runner Up

Validating Responsiveness of a Quality-of-Life Instrument for Allergic Contact Dermatitis 

Jodie Raffi, BA, MD, Isabel Elaine Allen, PhD, and Nina Botto, MD
Dermatitis. 31(3):209-214, May/June 2020

3rd Place Runner Up

Dubiously Doubtful: An Exploration of the Literature Concerning Doubtful, Macular Erythema, “?+,” and “+/−” Patch Test Reactions 

Kevin K. Veverka, MD and Mark D. P. Davis, MD
Dermatitis. 31(1):36-41, January/February 2020

Dermatitis Review Article of the Year

Fragrances: Contact Allergy and Other Adverse Effects

Anton C. de Groot, MD, PhD
Dermatitis. 31(1):13-35, January/February 2020

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ACDS Dermatitis Journal Update

PaperPal Preflight: Artificial Intelligence comes to Dermatitis
During our recent 2021 ACDS Annual Meeting, the ACDS Annual Business Meeting was held during which I provided an update on the ACDS Dermatitis journal. One of the features I described was PaperPal Preflight, a service offered by Wolters Kluwer (our publisher) to authors who are submitting manuscripts for consideration for publication in Dermatitis. The idea behind this optional service focuses on quality assurance prior to the manuscript being processed for the peer review process. This service will tell you whether your manuscript is ready for submission to Dermatitis. The artificial intelligence instantly (literally minutes to complete the entire process) scans the manuscript for the most common errors and omissions. Important characteristics, such as language problems, whether the references are current, length of the abstract and manuscript, and other features (figure legends, figure and table citations, keywords, etc.), are studied by artificial intelligence. A report of errors found in the manuscript is then generated, which is free of charge. The author can then select to have the errors corrected by the artificial intelligence, which has a small fee of $25.00 to complete the corrections and describe omissions and formatting errors. Credit card billing for the full service is via a safe and secure 3rd party vendor. After the author accepts the corrections, they can then submit the manuscript using the Editorial Manager.

For the author, this service offers the advantage of a shorter time to decision, fewer re-submissions, and a better submission experience. For the editor, there are fewer desk rejections, less time per manuscript and a shorter time for publication. For the publisher, there is less cost associated with publishing manuscripts and less copy editing is necessary. This is version 1.0 of PaperPal Preflight, and we anticipate refinements of this service in the future.

The PaperPal Preflight service is now operational within the Dermatitis Editorial Manager. Simply log in as an author, and follow the instructions to prepare your manuscript for analysis prior to submission. We encourage authors to take advantage of this service, particularly those international authors for whom English is a second language, and for novices to the field of publication. Certainly, even the most senior authors may benefit from this service. Please contact the journal office if there are any questions. Good luck with your submissions to Dermatitis!

Membership Survey for subscribers of Dermatitis
This survey will be directed to members, digital only subscribers, and social media users. It will be distributed within the next few weeks. We urge our members to complete this survey, which is being developed in collaboration with Wolters Kluwer research team. In a few weeks, the survey will be arriving in your email inbox as a survey monkey link. We are interested in learning how useful Dermatitis is to your practice, how you utilize the journal, the importance of the print versus online versions of the journal, the website and the importance of social media in disseminating our message. Of critical importance is how we stand with regard to other competing dermatology journals such as Contact Dermatitis. The most important information we hope to gain is: How can the journal can do a better job of meeting your needs? This survey will be one of many opportunities for our members to provide critical feedback to further improve the journal.

As always, we welcome your feedback. Please take the time to complete this survey, as it provides us with critical information for decision making related to journal policies and features.

Anthony A. Gaspari, MD
Dermatitis Editor-in-Chief

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ACDS Engages with the AMA


ACDS joined the ranks of the American Medical Association (AMA) in 2018 upon being accepted as a member of the Specialty and Service Society (SSS). ACDS is now on the precipice of becoming a full voting member in the esteemed AMA House of Delegates (HOD) as we have submitted the requisite materials to take this next step. AMA HOD represents all 50 states and well over 100 specialty and service societies.  SSS is the largest caucus in the AMA.  An association like ACDS must first be represented in the SSS before becoming a full voting member in the HOD. The SSS meets twice annually in conjunction with the Interim and Annual Meetings of the HOD. An SSS member society must participate for three years before it is eligible to seek admission to the HOD. I have been honored to attend all the meetings as our representative since our admission into the SSS. As a caucus, the SSS meets and votes to support, amend, or oppose submitted resolutions or board reports and ACDS has a vote in this process. The resolutions which are submitted from a variety of sources including state medical societies and national specialty groups dictate the important policies of the AMA.

Dermatology Section Council (DSC)

Because ACDS is a member of the AMA SSS we are also a member of the DSC within the AMA. Other DSC member dermatology-related groups include the American Academy of Dermatology Association, the American Society of Dermatopathology, the American Society of Dermatologic Surgery Association, the American College of Mohs Surgery, and a multitude of dedicated dermatologists who are members of state society AMA delegations. The DSC serves many important roles. Most importantly, the DSC submits important resolutions and strategizes on how to approach resolutions submitted by other organizations. It also promotes candidates from within the DSC to hold leadership roles in the AMA. DSC played a lead role in shaping recent AMA policy pertaining to our ability to buffer lidocaine, offer sound telemedicine policy, and provide fair exceptions to the burden of prior authorization for medications.

Looking to the Future

I hear all too often that the AMA is not relevant, but, on the contrary, it’s critically important for the ACDS to be involved and for our members to join and maintain membership in the AMA. Once ACDS is a full voting delegate member of the HOD, which I anticipate occurring at the June 2022 AMA Annual Meeting, we will also have representation at the all-important AMA CPT and RUC committees. As a full voting member, ACDS will be able to cast a vote on critically important AMA policy. It will also open opportunities for ACDS representatives to hold leadership roles within the AMA. DSC members currently hold important leadership roles at the AMA including Dr. Jack Resneck, Jr. - Chair of the AMA Board of Trustees-, Dr. Marta Van Beek - AMA Council on Legislation, and Dr. Adam Rubin – Secretary, Governing Council, SSS.

I am looking forward to representing ACDS at the fast-approaching AMA Virtual Annual HOD Meeting which will be held from June 12 - 16, 2021. I anticipate policy discussions on several key issues including mitigation from the new rules from Office of the National Coordinator on information blocking and our requirement to provide expedient patient access to laboratory results. There may also be discussions on updating the FD&C Cosmetic Act and policy on how best to approach personal care product safety.

On the coding and reimbursement front, we have been adjusting to the updates in the outpatient Evaluation and Management (E&M) codes, in conjunction with other dermatologic and medical societies. The AMA released technical edits to these codes in March to help further clarify some of the updated terminology. The other E&M families of codes will be undergoing a similar re-evaluation process, including the outpatient consultation codes, in the upcoming months.

Bruce A. Brod, MD, MHCI, FAAD
ACDS Representative, AMA Specialty and Service Society

Alexandra Flamm, MD, FAAD
Chair, ACDS Health Policy Committee

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The ACDS is committed to advancing the care and understanding of dermatitis and allergy through the promotion of education, research and advocacy. As part of this initiative, ACDS offers education awards to help encourage research in these areas.

For more information or to apply for an award, click here.

Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Healthcare Disparities Award

Focuses on the pathophysiology, epidemiology, diagnosis, management or prevention of atopic or contact dermatoses and their associated morbidity

Clinical Research Award
Research awards for the purpose of relevant clinical studies directed toward the subject of contact dermatitis.

ACDS 2020-2021 Clinical Research Award Winners

  • Brandon Adler, MD - Contact Allergens in Vinyl Medical Examination Gloves
  • Alexandra Flamm, MD - Establishing Consensus on the treatment of Toxicodendron Dermatitis
  • Vaibhav Garg - Characterizing Patterns of Allergy in African American Allergic Contact Dermatitis Patients
  • Walter Liszewski, MD - The Use of Mass Spectrometry to Identify Contact Allergens in Shoes
  • Lindsey Voller, BA - Investigation of Commercial Essential Oils for Formaldehyde Content

Mentoring Award
Mentoring awards for the purpose of assisting young dermatologists including dermatology residents, dermatology fellows, or dermatologist up to 5 years out of residency to become leaders/experts in the field of contact dermatitis by acquiring additional academic skills which may not be available at their training institutions.

ACDS 2020-2021 Mentoring Award Winners

  • Sachi Patel, MD – Mentoring program with Dathan Hamann, MD
  • Emily Privette, MD – Mentoring program with Peggy Wu, MD

Mid-Career Award
Career development awards for the purpose of providing financial support to ACDS members to help defray the cost of acquiring specific skills and knowledge to enhance their professional development in some aspect of contact dermatitis and/or occupational dermatology.

ACDS 2020-2021 Mid-Career Award Winner

  • Michael Sheehan, MD – Exploring the use of HPLC to identify new irritants and allergens in North American Hardwoods

Outcomes Research Award
Research awards with the purpose of establishing the value of expert specialist evaluation and management of chronic dermatitis.

ACDS 2020-2021 Outcomes Research Award Winner

  • Jennifer Chen, MD – Assessment of the Comorbidities of Chronic and Recurrent Allergic and Irritant Contact Dermatitis

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Stay connected with ACDS' latest educational virtual events.

These monthly virtual events are FREE to all ACDS members and residents. Registration is required.

BONUS - Select dates now offering FREE CME!

Have a colleague that might be interested in attending who is not an ACDS member? Be sure to invite them to attend. A non-refundable $25 registration fee will apply.

For more information on registering, please click on each banner below and register today. Questions? - Email us here.


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