August 29, 1996 in Nation/World

Fda Approves Poison Ivy Lotion

Compiled From Wire Services

People plagued by itchy poison ivy just got some help: the first government-backed drug to prevent the rash.

The Food and Drug Administration on Wednesday approved IvyBlock, a nonprescription lotion that dries to form a white, claylike barrier against poison ivy, oak or sumac.

Until now, the only proven help was avoiding the poisonous plants or wearing protective - often hot - clothing. While some other products are touted as possible protection, the FDA has approved none of them as actually working.

In a test of 144 people known to be allergic to poison ivy, the lotion protected 68 percent from developing any rash, and those who did itch had a less severe rash than they developed when they didn’t use the drug.

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