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Decontamination efficacy of soapy water and water washing following exposure of toxic chemicals on human skin


Decontamination efficacy of soapy water and water washing following exposure of toxic chemicals on human skin



Cutaneous and Ocular Toxicology 39(2): 134-142



ISSN/ISBN: 1556-9527

PMID: 32216482

DOI: 10.1080/15569527.2020.1748046

Aim of the study: Following exposure to toxic chemicals, skin uptake is a potential route of intoxication. Therefore, efficient methods for rapid skin decontamination to mitigate systemic effects are of utmost importance. In operational guidelines, skin decontamination is recommended to be performed by dry absorption and washing with water or soapy water. In the present study, evaluation of decontamination efficacy using water or soapy water was performed for five chemicals, three toxic industrial chemicals and two simulants for chemical warfare agents.Materials and methods: Decontamination was initiated at time points 5, 15, 45 and 120 min after exposure in order to evaluate the time window for efficient decontamination. Experiments were conducted utilizing an in vitro skin penetration model to allow exposure of toxic chemicals on human skin. Results: For all test substances, it was clearly demonstrated that decontamination had greater efficacy when initiated at the earliest time-point while decontamination after 120 min was less efficient. Adding soap to the water showed no significant improvement for any of the tested substances.Conclusion: These results are of reledvance for the development of efficient operational decontamination procedures.

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Accession: 069954011

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