Meeting reports and Abstracts

  • De Groot AC. Childhood dermatomyositis. Brit J Dermatol 1980;102:478
  • De Groot AC. Kathon CG: risk of sensitization. J Appl Cosmetol 1987;5:70

This is the abstract of a presentation I gave in Rome in 1987, my first international appearance (Kathon CG: Risk of sensitization. 2nd International Meeting on Cosmetic Dermatology. Rome, May 19-22, 1987). An article about this has been published as De Groot AC, Bruijnzeel DP. Kathon CG: risk of sensitization. J Appl Cosmetol 1988;6:161-168. I learned a lot from this 'adventure', both about myself and Italians.


De Groot is nervous

Later on I have given some lectures abroad (most of them by invitation), but those trips to other countries are not for me, I am not adventurous enough and I am much too nervous that I will miss the train, the plane, can't find the taxi stand, have to go to the toilet when you can't, arrive late for my lecture and stand in line at the conference restaurant while I haven't been able to find a plate yet.

But more importantly: it turned out that I don't feel comfortable in unknown company and that makes me insecure. I am very bad at small talk and often don't know what to say. And later, when I had a little more experience, I saw the conference attendees, after the lecture was finished and the questions answered and I walked away, from the corner of my eye sneeking up to me: 'Professor DeGroet, may I ask you a question, please?' Horrible. And I was always so nervous beforehand. Even at the beginning of 2020, when I was still teaching in Groningen, I was often nervous before my presentation. And that while I knew it to be absolutely unneccessary, because it has ALWAYS gone well and I know from evaluations of the UMCG that the students really appreciate my talks (actually: interactive presentations) and rate them as very good. And then, that nervousness, WHY? Well, you can imagine what it's like abroad at international meetings. Okay, I have made myself sufficiently vulnerable again for now.

De Groot falls asleep

But another reason why that conventions are not for me, is that ALMOST NO ONE CAN GIVE A DECENT LECTURE!!! Way too much text on a slide, talking too fast, an overdose of information, way too hard to follow, a bone-dry presentation without a moment to laugh, way too hot in the room, extremely long-winded, all reasons why I regularly fell asleep. Incidentally, research has shown that a not inconsiderable proportion of conference attendees actually do fall asleep! I knew very quickly that I would learn almost nothing at conferences. I would much rather read something in a magazine.


A then still young drs. De Groot (I was only allowed to call myself dr. in December of the following year) in Rome in 1987

Not really an admirer

Now to the Italians. I'm not making any judgments about it, just telling you what I've seen. During the conference, the projector suddenly broke down. The light bulb in it didn't work, so everything stood still, because there was only 1 room for the entire conference with 1 projector (OK, it was 1987). Plug in, plug out, doesn't help. A man goes to put beer mats under the front legs of the thing and looks disappointed that it doesn't help. 10 minutes later another employee arrives who …..does exactly the same. Slunk off grumpily. An hour and a half later a new projector arrives.

Second observation: the work ethic of the Italians (or in this case (some of) the Romans, or should I say it more carefully, the congress staff) was - to put it euphemistically - not optimal. I wanted to return home a day early and asked several congress staff ('hostesses', but the decent kind, that is) if they would help me. Only the sixth was prepared to do so and indeed was very helpful. At one point when she and I stood with a group of her colleagues, they looked at her with pity and sighed 'Lavorare, lavorare, semper lavorare' ('work, work, always work').


  • De Groot AC, Coenraads PJ, Nater JP. Adverse effects of cosmetics: a survey among clients of beauticians. J Appl Cosmetol 1987;5:104
  • De Groot AC. Kathon CG allergy: practical information for the dermatologist and the patient. Brit J Dermatol 1989;121:522-523
  • De Groot AC, Conemans JMH. Contact allergy from mitomycin C after intravesical instillation. Contact Dermatitis 1990;23:263-264
  • De Groot AC. Contact allergy to cosmetics. In: E Panconesi, Ed. Dermatology in Europe. Oxford: Blackwell Scientific Publications, 1991:384-386
  • De Groot AC. Nystatin allergy: petrolatum is not the optimal vehicle for patch testing. In: E Panconesi, Ed. Dermatology in Europe. Oxford: Blackwell Scientific Publications, 1991:752
  • De Groot AC. The prevalence of contact allergy in atopic patients. In: E Panconesi, Ed. Dermatology in Europe. Oxford: Blackwell Scientific Publications, 1991:704
  • Sigurdsson V, De Wit RFE, de Groot AC. Infantile acne. Br J Dermatol 1991;125:285
  • Hulsmans R-FHJ, Lucker GPH, van der Kleij AMJ, de Groot AC. Kathon CG und Methyldibromglutaronitril: wichtige Kontaktallergene bei Patienten mit Perianalekzem. 18e Coloproktologie-Tage, Bad Homburg, 6-8 March 1992
  • De Groot AC. Fragrances as a cause of contact dermatitis in cosmetics. Clinical aspects and epidemiological data. Jadassohn Centenary Congress, London, UK, 9-12 October 1996. Book of Abstracts, p. 4 (nr. 9)
  • De Groot AC. Adverse reactions to fragrances: their less 'rosy' side. Intensive course in Dermato-Cosmetic Sciences. Vrije Universiteit Brussel, 1997:184-194
  • De Groot AC. Clinical relevance of contact allergy to preservatives and fragrances. Journal of the European Academy of Dermatology and Venereology 1999;12(suppl.2):S69

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