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Household products 

Household products
Chapter:
Household products
Author(s):

D Nicholas Bateman

, Robert D Jefferson

, Simon HL Thomas

, John P Thompson

, and J Allister Vale

DOI:
10.1093/med/9780199594740.003.0011
Page of

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date: 18 August 2019

Household products are a common cause of telephone calls to poisons centres, and usually follow an accident involving young children who have been exposed to such material while playing at home. Occasionally, confused elderly patients may inadvertently ingest detergents or antiseptics. Considering how many such products are available serious toxicity is uncommon, but it is important to understand that some detergents can cause significant caustic injury. There has been recent concern about sachets containing automatic dishwasher and washing machine detergents, where the contents may be released if a child bites them. These products may cause local toxicity and, in rare cases, systemic features. Many household products are non-toxic, including perfumes and cosmetics, and it is important to have an understanding of the range of these compounds in order that inappropriate hospital referrals and treatment is not provided.

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