Shaving cream

Alternative names 
Shaving lotion

Definition
This poisoning is due to ingestion of shaving cream.

Poisonous Ingredient

     
  • Anionic surfactants (soaps)  
  • Nonionic surfactants (soaps)

Where Found

     
  • Various shaving creams

Note: This list may not be all inclusive.

Symptoms

     
  • Respiratory       o Difficulty breathing (from inhalation or allergic reaction)  
  • Eyes, ears, nose, and throat       o Burning pain in the throat       o Blurred vision       o Burns to the eye  
  • Skin       o Rash  
  • Gastrointestinal       o Vomiting       o Abdominal pain       o diarrhea (watery, bloody)

Home Treatment
Give milk or water. These products are normally considered relatively nontoxic. Call Poison Control for further guidance. Do not induce Vomiting.

Before Calling Emergency
Determine the following information:

     
  • The patient’s age, weight, and condition  
  • The name of the product (ingredients and strengths, if known)  
  • The time it was swallowed  
  • The amount swallowed

Poison Control, or a local emergency number
They will instruct you if it is necessary to take the patient to the hospital. See Poison Control centers for telephone numbers and addresses. Take the container with you to the emergency room.

What to expect at the emergency room

Some or all of the following procedures may be performed:

     
  • Treat the allergic reaction with diphenhydramine and prednisone.  
  • For swallowed poison:       o Placement of a tube down the nose and into the stomach (a nasogastric tube, or an NG tube) to wash out the stomach (gastric lavage).       o Activated charcoal administration.       o Endoscopy - the placement of a camera down the throat to see the extent of burns to the esophagus and the stomach.       o Give IV fluids.       o Admission to the hospital.       o Give an antidote.       o Treat the symptoms.

Expectations (prognosis)
Since these products are relatively nontoxic, recovery is very likely.

Johns Hopkins patient information

Last revised: December 7, 2012
by Sharon M. Smith, M.D.

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All ArmMed Media material is provided for information only and is neither advice nor a substitute for proper medical care. Consult a qualified healthcare professional who understands your particular history for individual concerns.