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Chemical Burns

Question:

What type of chemical burn did you experience? Submit Your Comment

Comment from: Ladyhawk, 35-44 Female (Patient) Published: February 08

I work in environmental services at a hospital cleaning and recently they started using a new chemical that kills bad germs like C. difficile, MRSA, etc. This new product is very strong and the smell literally takes your breath away. After 3 days of using it I had started getting bad chemical burns where my skin wasn't protected, like my wrists and forearm. The fumes also caused burns on my face, ears and neck. It feels like a deep burn similar to a sunburn tingling and painful to heat or warm water. MSDS (material safety data sheet) says it's a pesticide.

Comment from: Bluejean girl, 55-64 Female (Patient) Published: November 12

I work in the hospital setting as EVS (environmental services) technician. I use a cleaning product that works very well to kill 36 microorganism in 1 minute, but not so good if it gets on your skin. I had a spill on my hands and they are swelling. My fingers, palms and thumbs are red and feel as though my hands have a temperature. I have total numbness and tingling and pain shooting through hands, and sore to the touch. I can't use hands for now.

Comment from: Shirley , 55-64 Female (Caregiver) Published: July 26

During a colonoscopy the sleep medicine missed the vein. I have bad chemical burns on my arm, and also blisters.

Comment from: Patterson1203, 35-44 Female (Patient) Published: July 05

I got a chemical burn from non-acetone fingernail polish remover; twice. The first time it happened, I figured it was from something else since I'd used the remover many times with no issue. Both times I got huge water blisters that covered the fingertips that held the cotton ball. The skin turned white and completely separated from my fingers, in huge pieces. There was never any pain.

Comment from: Jaydub, 55-64 Female (Patient) Published: June 19

I used non acetone nail polish remover (ethyl acetate and alcohol), the last of a bottle that I've had for years. I have used it many times before with no problem. This time, from chemical burn holding the cotton ball saturated with remover, the skin on my thumb is slightly numb, has cracks and fingerprint whorls are gone. Hope it doesn't get any worse. I will be throwing away that polish remover!

Comment from: Confused about what , 25-34 Female (Patient) Published: October 16

I had come into contact with a chemical, not sure what, but little blisters have formed and it itches and burns on my vagina, usually one day after intercourse.

Comment from: Nep, 65-74 Male (Patient) Published: August 24

I had a chemical burn from mineral spirits.

Comment from: Nora, 35-44 Female (Patient) Published: August 17

I was at work cleaning the meat room with this chemical product I cannot remember the name of at the moment, and I noticed a rash. At lease that is what it looked like at first, then I noticed the skin on the back of my hands are peeling from the chemical burn.

Comment from: Dhale82, 35-44 Female (Patient) Published: May 16

I got degreaser on my face and got a chemical burn. It is red, itchy and painful.

Comment from: FCon, 19-24 Male (Patient) Published: February 06

I was using a chemical degreaser at my work, which we had just received for the first time. I wore gloves and covered my mouth and eyes. The gloves I ended up using must have been too short because some mist from the spray got on my arm without my noticing it. It has been a few days and there is a red rash on my arm and it is very itchy and slightly uncomfortable. Overall, it isn't too bad, but if I had gotten any more on my skin, I would probably have had to seek medical attention. According to the SDS (safety data sheet) from the product page on their website, minor burns do not need immediate medical attention and can usually be treated with an antibiotic ointment/cream, which is what I will be using. The moral of the story is to always make sure you read the instructions before use (which I did!) and to take proper precautions when handling a caustic substance!

Comment from: derek, 45-54 Male (Patient) Published: September 27

While using acid cleaner I got on my hands and under my nails. My finger tips are really sore and burning. Pus is coming from under my nails.

Comment from: Jrressling , 65-74 Male (Patient) Published: July 24

I was using oregano oil for toe fungus and it was working so I thought I would drench all my toes with the oregano oil and that night my toes hurt. I had them covered with a clean white sock. I woke up and they were burnt. The skin is like leather and I can't bend my toes, it's awful.

Comment from: SickyNicky, 35-44 Female (Patient) Published: January 09

I used a body hair remover that had no directions on wearing gloves so I didn't. I noticed that at the end of my application there seemed gunk stuck to my nails and I couldn't get them clean. So I used my nails to get that off. I realized my nails had melted by the product and now were paper thin. My stomach got the brunt of the abuse. I applied this stuff to my arms and legs and had gotten some on my stomach. It started burning and now it is bright red and oozing green matter. My legs started bleeding in places I had a healed cut.

Comment from: FPS, 35-44 Male (Patient) Published: July 17

I used a rag with mineral spirits to wipe dust off boards I was going to stain. Without thinking, I put the rag in my hip pocket. Within a half hour, the mineral spirits had soaked through my pants and underwear, and I felt a burning sensation. Later, I looked at the area, and it was red. I washed it off and put burn ointment on it, but it is still hurting several hours later. I have used mineral spirits lots of times, and this is the first time I have had a problem.

Comment from: Minnie, 0-2 Female (Caregiver) Published: August 07

I used Roux stain remover and got a chemical burn.

Comment from: Angel, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: July 27

I think I got the chemical burn from an acid I sprayed and maybe it got on my shoes and stayed on the tissue longer. I never had a breakout with this before as I wore gloves.

Comment from: Dustin, 25-34 Male (Patient) Published: May 23

I got chemical burn from Clear Coat spray.

Comment from: Jean, 55-64 Female (Patient) Published: May 22

I'm on a farm and my tractor battery was jammed. Without thinking I pushed up with elbow to get it back in the holder. That night and today my elbow is red with bumps and I feel like scratching it. Not sure if it's chemical burn from the battery dirt or something else.

Comment from: jacqueline W., 35-44 Female (Patient) Published: February 23

I just experienced a minor chemical burn from the toilet cleaner. It really burns.

Comment from: peewee, 55-64 Female (Caregiver) Published: December 07

I went to a beauty school for a facial and got a burn to my face. I went to two doctors and both gave me cream that turned my face white. I signed the paper so there's nothing I can do legal.

Comment from: Bilie44femail, 35-44 Female (Patient) Published: May 03

I used an in Home Hair color to cover my gray and left it on a little too long, 1st day no problems, 2nd day serious redness on my face, 10 days later I nearly Died! Puss, Bleeding, from my scalp, My ear canal swelled shut, yellow fluid seeped from my eyes, my face swelled, My privates itched, my entire body was covered in a deep rash with welts, Both my ears cracked and seeped and bled. I finally went to the ER only because I knew I was about to die. They gave me steroid shot, pain killers, antibiotics, naproxen and steroid prescriptions. It has been 22 days since I used the color and I'm still suffering but not as bad. I am still not sure if I have any scaring.

Comment from: Kiran, 25-34 Male (Patient) Published: July 10

I had a 3rd degree chemical burn with 56 percent burn.

Comment from: Big, 45-54 Male (Patient) Published: April 24

I had a caustic burn.

Comment from: toolgirl, 55-64 Female (Patient) Published: October 14

I was using a rust kill product that requires gloves (which I used). It is a sulfuric acid based product so I was very careful... I thought! I am an absolute stickler for safety gear. I rinsed the tire rim in running water like I was supposed to all over. I thought I had got rid of it all but left it for a couple of days to dry and then rinsed it off again but with my bare hands because I didn't think there would be any residue left. The rinse water went over my finger tips and under my nails and that is where I started to get red raw blisters all around my cuticles and under my lovely long nails. I can hardly use my hands and keeping them clean hurts like crazy because hot water hurts like sticking my hands in acid all over again. Then my little fingers started to get infected and I had to clip all my fingernails off right back to clean out all the pus that had formed in the blisters. I had already gone to the doctors and got antifungal anticeptic cream and pills but I did need to go back and get more help and now I am typing this with raw fingers so the going is tough. I find it really hard doing any chores, showering, washing my hair etc. So I do hope people will learn from my mistake and not have to learn the hard way. You might not think it will happen to you but what does it cost to put those gloves on anyway?

Comment from: BEHReyes, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: August 23

Deck stain base splattered into my eyes across my face while working. The pan is unreal. The top three and a half layers of my eyes are burned off. I apply several artificial tears and wear moisture chamber eye glasses and moisture chamber goggles, take pain meds, and use a hot air humidifier.

Comment from: Mike, 45-54 Male (Patient) Published: June 14

I have a chemical burn under my finger nails and on my hands from deck cleaner.

Comment from: 35-44 Male Published: June 04

I was cleaning a pool. I mixed chlorine powder and it reacted with a loud blast. The chlorine spilled on my face and eyes. My face is very blistered.

Comment from: Big Jen, 55-64 Female (Patient) Published: March 21

I used a cream facial hair remover which said it was for sensitive skin. I followed the directions on the box by trying it in a small area. I had no reaction, so the next day applied it to my chin and upper lip. Less than two minutes after application, my chin started burning so I washed the cream off. The upper lip is okay, but the entire chin area is red, itchy, and has bumps.

Comment from: Wayne, 55-64 Male (Patient) Published: September 10

I got oven cleaner on my hands. It's been four months and the back of my hands are very chapped and peeling. No over the counter topical creams or sauces seem to improve the condition.

Comment from: Dummy, 35-44 Male (Patient) Published: January 24

It was Mineral Spirits that spilled on the leg and was rinsed off at work. Because of a recent promotion I was hesitant to say anything for fear of causing any problems and so I left it alone. Several days passed and it continued to get worse until the skin began to crack and split apart. The waiting and not treating it promptly meant that the exposure time was lengthy. I still had to be treated but I was still hesitant because I did not want anyone to find out that it happened at work. So I waited still to my dismay. Now I have lengthy treatments to necrotic skin that I somehow have to figure out without missing work.

Comment from: Tolar, 65-74 Female (Patient) Published: December 14

I got chemical burns on the bottoms of both my feet from being in our pool cleaning spots from the floor of the pool. We had added chemicals to balance the pool water just previously. After 6 months I have constant pain in the bottom of my toes and ball of feet.

Comment from: kasey70, 55-64 Female Published: September 14

I used a cream hair remover on my jaw line and upper lip. Now I have a horrible itchy rash.

Comment from: Aleigh, 25-34 Female (Patient) Published: August 23

I have been the dishwasher at work for the last 2 days. The sanitizer used in the dishwasher burned my right hand. The palm of my hand is hot in skin temperature and my hand is all red. My fingers have become swollen and tender and my hand feels extremely dry and leathery.

Comment from: cathy, 55-64 Female (Patient) Published: June 16

Plant area fertilizer was the cause of my chemical burn.

Comment from: dolly, 55-64 Female (Patient) Published: June 14

I was cleaning the perimeter of a trailer roof with mineral spirits using thick napkin-like cloths. Each time I finished with one, I stuck it in my shorts pocket because I didn't have a rubbish bag on me. The result was a burn on my skin where the pocket sits.

Comment from: Acs, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: May 31

I got a chemical burn on my fingers when I was using a deck cleaner.

Comment from: j1207, 25-34 Female (Caregiver) Published: April 04

I experienced a chemical reaction from acrylic and non latex gloves that have acrylic in them. My fingers were inflamed and extremely itchy and then a week later my skin started to peel and had open cuts and now are all red and cracked and they look like blood keeps coming to the surface of the skin.

Comment from: kahuna, 45-54 Female (Caregiver) Published: April 01

I got a chemical burn when I used OTC acne products. They burned my skin and now I have bubbles on my face and neck. My skin is dry and it feels dead. It sort of itches and is peeling in places.

Comment from: feathers, 55-64 Female (Patient) Published: April 01

I got a chemical burn when I used acne treatment cream with benzoyl peroxide.

Comment from: gilligan, 55-64 Female Published: February 28

I got burned from a starter spray for a vehicle. I held the can between my thighs while I put the lid back on the carburetor and the spray soaked thru my jeans. I had a 15-minute ride home. It started burning the first 5 minutes. By the time I got home, I stripped, took a shower and applied some gel strictly for burns. This is my 3rd day out and it's still warm to the touch but not as angry red looking as most of the soreness has gone away.

Comment from: ooops, 35-44 Male Published: July 21

I applied hair removal cream to my husband's back and it started to burn took a shower and the next morning he had. Burn scabs on the area treated.

Medically reviewed by John A. Daller, MD American Board of Surgery with subspecialty certification in surgical critical care

REFERENCES:

Cox, Robert D., MD, PhD. "Chemical Burns." Medscape. Updated Oct. 6, 2015.
Dire, Daniel J., MD, FACEP, FAAP, FAAEM. "CBRNE - Chemical Warfare Agents." Medscape. Updated Mar. 23, 2016.

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