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Potentially life-threatening emergency
Sulfur dioxide poisoning
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Potentially life-threatening emergency

Sulfur dioxide poisoning

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Contributors: Scott Echternacht, Benjamin L. Mazer MD, MBA, Abhijeet Waghray MD
Other Resources UpToDate PubMed

Synopsis

Sulfur dioxide poisoning is typically caused by inhalational or airborne exposure to the chemical, which causes burning pain in mucous membranes, lacrimation, cough, and wheezing. It can also exacerbate underlying pulmonary diseases, such as asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). Topical exposure to sulfur dioxide can cause a frostbite-like reaction.

Sulfur dioxide poisoning most commonly occurs from occupational exposure in fields such as coal and metal refining and chemical processing. Sulfur dioxide causes irritation and toxicity because of the formation of sulfurous acid when sulfur dioxide comes in contact with skin and mucous membranes.

Sulfur dioxide poisoning is treated symptomatically with oxygen supplementation, bronchodilators, and intubation in severe cases.

Codes

ICD10CM:
T59.1X4A – Toxic effect of sulfur dioxide, undetermined, initial encounter

SNOMEDCT:
216857007 – Accidental poisoning by sulfur dioxide

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Last Reviewed: 04/05/2019
Last Updated: 04/05/2019
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Potentially life-threatening emergency
Sulfur dioxide poisoning
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Sulfur dioxide poisoning (Inhalation) : Cough, Nasal irritation, Dyspnea, Epistaxis, Wheezing
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