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Clin Exp Dermatol. 2001 May;26(3):248-50.

Severe cutaneous reaction to CS gas.

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Department of Dermatology, University Hospital of Wales, Cardiff, Wales, UK.


Tear gas is used throughout the World for control of riots and civil disobedience. CS gas as used by the UK police force is issued as a 'spray' and is 5% CS in methylisobutylketone (MIBK), a potent irritant. Assaults on police officers in forces issued with CS spray have fallen significantly over the past 3 years, whilst having risen in areas without it. Thus, CS gas appears to be an effective deterrent. However, significant cutaneous reactions can occur as a result of exposure. We report a severe contact dermatitis to CS gas to highlight the clinical features. The nature of CS gas and potential cutaneous adverse reactions are discussed.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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