Saturday, June 15, 2024

Chemical Burns

Background

Chemical burns can be caused by acids or bases that come into contact with tissue. Acids are defined as proton donors (H+), and bases are defined as proton acceptors (OH). Bases also are known as alkalis. Both acids and bases can be defined as caustics, which cause significant tissue damage on contact. The strength of an acid is defined by how easily it gives up the proton; the strength of a base is determined by how avidly it binds the proton. The strength of acids and bases is defined by using the pH scale, which ranges from 1-14 and is logarithmic. A strong acid has a pH of 1, and a strong base has a pH of 14. A pH of 7 is neutral.

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