Allergic To Axe Body Spray: Can School Ban Deodorant After One Student Hospitalized?

By Philip Ross on March 20, 2013 5:43 PM EDT

Axe body spray
Axe Body Spray has been banned on one Pennsylvania high school campus after one student had a severe allergic reaction to the deodorant and was hospitalized. (Photo: Creative Commons)

A high school in Pennsylvania has asked its students to stop using Axe Body Spray after one student with a severe allergy to the deodorant was hospitalized.

The student was a freshman at Freedom High School in the city of Bethlehem. NBC reported that the principal of Freedom posted a message on the school's website asking students to stop using Axe Body Spray, citing the freshman student's "extreme allergy" to the aerosol deodorant.

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From the principal's message:

The purpose of this posting is to make all parents, staff and students aware of a medical issue involving a Freedom High School student having an extreme allergy to Axe Body Spray. This allergy is potentially life threatening for this student. Most recently this student has been transported to the hospital by ambulance for emergency medical treatment due to this student being exposed to Axe Body Spray while attending school.

The principal goes on to say that controlling students' deodorant preferences is impossible, but that the school hopes to create dialogue about the issue so the student with the severe allergy can feel comfortable on campus.  

The principal told The Daily Mail earlier today that the student has recovered, but is planning to study from home for the remainder of the year to avoid being exposed to the aerosol deodorant again. The boy's parents told the principal that even walking by someone wearing Axe Body Spray was enough for their son to experience an adverse reaction, according to The Daily Mail.

According to Skin Deep, a cosmetics database assembled by the Environmental Working Group that assigns a "hazard" rating to thousands of cosmetic products based on things like the toxicity of the ingredients in them, Axe Body Spray is a "moderately hazardous" product. The scale is from No. 1 to No. 10, lower numbers being considered "low hazard", and higher numbers indicating a "high hazard". Axe Body Spray scored a 5, giving it a moderate hazard warning.

It's unclear what exactly in Axe Body Spray caused the student's allergic reaction. One doctor told NBC that respiratory problems like asthma could be triggered by a product in the air or on the skin. Things like perfume, bleach and some flowers can also cause breathing issues.

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