Burns caused by chemicals can create a unique burn and can be of any degree. Contact to chemicals can happen in both the workplace and home environment. The main types of chemicals include pesticides, acids, hydrocarbons, alkali, and household cleaning supplies.
The hands, face and other areas of the extremities are where the majority of common chemical burns occur. Four percent of burns and thirty percent of burn victim fatalities are chemical. Longer hospital stays and more complications resulting from these types of burns. The majority of deaths result from ingestion of the previously mentioned toxic materials.
Causes of Chemical Burns
Vocations such as chemical fabrication, mining, medicinal substance creation, and pool maintenance may put employees at risk for chemical exposure which has the capability of burning the body and skin.
In addition to workplace chemical burns, an injury can also occur in a home environment, or even while in a motor vehicle crash.
How Chemical Burns Occur
Areas of denatured proteins result from any type of burn, no matter the cause. When this occurs, proteins change shape and start to break apart. Parts of the cell membrane becomes damaged, leaking fluid out of the cell resulting in the cells death. A chemical reaction, rather than heat, is what causes denatured proteins from chemicals.
Painful chemical reactions can occur with the following substances:
- Sulfuric Acid
- Hydrochloric Acid
- Silver Nitrate
- Hydrofluoric Acid
- Sulfur Mustard
A chemical burn severity is determined by the following:
- Amount of Burning Agent
- Skin Contact Duration
- Mechanism of Action
Symptoms of Chemical Burn Injury
- Vomiting and Nausea
- Breathing Difficulties
- Convulsions or Seizures
Chemical Burn Treatment
To treat a chemical burn, as much of the chemical must be removed first, if at all possible. Prior to flushing with water, be sure to brush off all visible chemicals. All contaminated clothing should be removed and the wound area irrigated with an abundance of room temperature water. Do not treat a chemical burn by soaking in a tub or with chemicals. A burn spreads to other areas of the body when tub soaking. The wound may need to be irrigated anywhere from thirty minutes up to two hours.
The victims should seek medical attention immediately if the chemical was inhaled or somehow internal. Also, seek medical attention if the burn is extensive or when a heat source is hard to remove. Do not use ointments or salve in chemical burns for a home remedy.
Louisiana Burn Injury Lawyer
If you or someone you care about is a victim of a burn injury in New Orleans due to the negligence of an entity or person, protect your rights by contacting Cueria Law Firm. We have extensive knowledge handling burn injury cases and are committed to receiving full compensation for our Louisiana clients.