ACTION STAT: Hydrofluoric acid skin exposure
Lori Barker MS, RN, CEN, CPEN

June 2012 
Volume 42  Number 6
Pages 72 - 72
  PDF Version Available!

MR. D, 44, IS BROUGHT to the ED decontamination area by paramedics complaining of 5/10 right knee pain and erythema. Thirty minutes earlier, while carrying a container of hydrofluoric acid (HF) at work, he felt a burning sensation in his right knee. His pant leg was wet and the skin underneath visibly red and swollen. He immediately went to the nearest emergency shower and removed his contaminated clothing while simultaneously and thoroughly flushing the area of exposure with water for 5 minutes. A supervisor then helped him put on chemical protective gloves and massage the antidote, 2.5% calcium gluconate gel, into the burn site. Mr. D continued to reapply the gel and massage the site while he was transported to the ED. The supervisor donned protective attire, double-bagged, sealed, and labeled his contaminated clothing, and arranged for its safe disposal at the scene.Upon arrival in the ED's decontamination area, Mr. D is alert and oriented and his airway is patent. He's able to continue

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