Alternative names 
Cold wave lotion

This poisoning is from exposure to cold wave lotion.

Poisonous Ingredient

Where Found

  • Various cold wave lotions, numerous brand names

Note: This list may not be all inclusive.


  • Respiratory       o Shortness of breath (either from inhalation or allergic reaction to skin exposure)  
  • Eyes, ears, nose, and throat       o Possibly serious damage to the eyes       o Mouth irritation  
  • Skin       o If the product comes in contact with skin possible rash and reddening of the skin (from over-use or allergic reaction)  
  • Gastrointestinal       o Cramping       o Stomach pain       o Vomiting       o Diarrhea

Home Treatment
Discontinue use. Dilute with water or milk. Call Poison Control for guidance. For any ingestion or toxic exposure, seek emergency medical care immediately.

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
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  
  • For skin exposure       o Irrigation (washing of the skin), perhaps every few hours for several days       o Skin debridement (surgical removal of burned skin)       o Admission or transfer to a hospital that specializes in burn care

Expectations (prognosis)
Skin problems will clear up if use is discontinued. If the lotion is ingested, recovery normally occurs if appropriate treatment is given in time. As with any toxic ingestion, prognosis and recovery depends on the time to treatment and the amount of toxin ingested.

Johns Hopkins patient information

Last revised: December 2, 2012
by Arthur A. Poghosian, 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.