Skin necrosis and venous thrombosis from subcutaneous injection of charcoal lighter fluid (naptha).
A 33-year-old white man injected approximately 4 cc of charcoal lighter fluid (99.4% naptha/0.6% inert ingredients) subcutaneously into his left antecubital fossa. The injection resulted in the toxic necrosis of his volar forearm skin extending proximally to mid-humerus and distally to the metacarpophalangeal joints of the left hand dorsally over a 6-day period. The patient ultimately required extensive surgical debridement, secondary operative closure, and approximately 150 cm2 of split-thickness skin grafting. This case demonstrates the potential for widespread, delayed toxic necrosis of the skin resulting from subcutaneous injection of naptha. This patient's case appears to represent the most severe and widespread case of toxic necrosis of the skin resulting from the subcutaneous injection of hydrocarbons reported in the literature. This case also demonstrates extensive toxic thrombophlebitis not reported in prior cases involving subcutaneous injection of hydrocarbons.
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