JOURNAL ARTICLE

Hydrofluoric acid burns

M A MacKinnon
Dermatologic Clinics 1988, 6 (1): 67-74
3383459
Hydrofluoric acid burns create unique problems that require specialized treatment to prevent serious sequelae. The most important factors to remember are the delay in the onset of signs and symptoms related to concentration of acid and the penetration and destruction of tissues by fluoride ions, which bind calcium and magnesium cations with subsequent serious systemic effects. In this article, an attempt has been made to describe these factors and to offer recommended treatment protocols which, if appropriately applied, can offset the destructive nature of HF burns. Several methods of treatment have been offered, and it is recommended that one or more be used according to circumstances. The most important initial point in treatment is the recognition that an HF burn has occurred. Then, with a clear understanding of the mechanisms of injury, one can properly manage such a burn. It is hoped that this report will assist the practitioner in dealing with this potential serious and complex problem.

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