Cement Contact Dermatitis

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What About Cement Allergies? Allergies to wet concrete are normally caused by Hexavalent Chromium. Traces of Hexavalent Chromium are found in all cement. Hexavalent Chromium is a known allergen to some people. Sensitization normally requires months to years of repeated exposure to occur. Wet cement is extremely corrosive and quickly destroys skin surfaces. This destruction allows Hexavalent Chromium to easily penetrate skin layers and enter skin cells. Once you become sensitized you are sensitized for life and even exposure to a small amount of cement can trigger a severe reaction. Studies suggest that 5-15% of all concrete and masonry workers will develop a Chromium allergy at some point in their work life. Affected workers are strongly urged to find a job where Chromium exposure is eliminated.

The medical term for cement caused skin problems is "Cement Contact Dermatitis".

Cement Contact Dermatitis There are 4 basic categories of this disease: 1] DRYNESS IRRITATION: Portland cement is hygroscopic by nature. This means it readily takes up and retains moisture. Anyone that comes in contact with wet cement will experience skin dryness. This condition normally subsides after thorough decontamination and moisturizing.


2] CHRONIC IRRITANT CONTACT DERMATITIS: This condition is found in 80% of concrete workers. Chronic Dermatitis is caused by daily exposure to even low levels of wet cement. Incidental contact is unavoidable on the job site. Dermatitis symptoms include stinging, itching, redness, swelling, cracking, blisters, scaling, fissures and bleeding. Cuts or wounds heal very slowly and infections are likely.



3] ACUTE IRRITANT DERMATITIS (CEMENT BURNS): Cement burns occur within a matter of minutes to hours of continuous exposure to wet cement. The burning process is accelerated when clothing, boots or gloves are saturated with wet cement and are rubbing against skin. It should be noted that skin destruction by alkalis is different from acids. Acids cause a burning sensation very quickly and alert you of the problem. Alkalis do not. Alkali damage causes no heat and no pain until it is too late to wash it off. By the time pain is felt, the alkalis have soaked into the skin. Many cement burn victims require skin grafts leaving massive scars.



4] ALLERGIC CONTACT DERMATITIS: Hexavalent Chromium in wet cement may cause allergies in some people. The cumulative effect of daily exposure may take months or years to cause a reaction. Chrome sensitization is irreversible. Sensitized individuals must avoid contact with any cement, wet or dry. Symptoms appear much like chronic irritant dermatitis, with swelling, redness, oozing, cracking, stinging, itching, blisters and scaling.



Eliminating Cement Burns & Cement Dermatitis

Recent Research In 1995 the National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health funded a research project dedicated to the development of a manual on preventing occupational skin problems caused by wet cement. Research participants included the Portland Cement Association, National Ready Mixed Concrete Association, Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), Operative Plasterers' and Cement Masons International Association, Bricklayers Union, doctors, and many other concrete industry stakeholders. Jim Warren, President of Force Field Technologies, Inc., was invited to participate in the Professional Advisory Group of the research project. His work with pH buffering solutions was of special interest and ultimately became the single most important finding in the research project. Through extensive research, Mr. Warren discovered a way to safely neutralize the caustic effects of calcium hydroxide on human skin and at the same time reduce the amount of Hexavalent Chromium in wet cement. His invention was submitted to and tested by Construction Technology Laboratories, Inc. and the National Ready Mixed Concrete Associations's A.H. Smith Joint Research Laboratory, to validate his findings. In Auguest of 1998 a U.S. Patent was issued. The invention was named NEUTRALITE SAFETY SOLUTION.

How Does Neutralite Work?

Neutralite Safety Solution is a spray applied buffering solution. Chemical buffers belong to a particular group of chemical compounds that have the ability to alter the pH of acids or bases. They can reduce the pH of alkalis or increase the pH of acids.Neutralite has a preset pH of 5.5 that that matches pH of normal skin.When Neutralite comes in contact with wet cement there is a chemical change. Cement is no longer cement and irritating agents are rendered harmless. Cement Burns can be completely avoided by early application of Neutralite to wet cement contaminated skin. Affected areas should be drench sprayed within a few minutes of contamination. Wet cement contaminated clothing, gloves and boots should be removed and/or neutralized with Neutralite Safety Solution.

Routine work day. Use of Neutralite [3,4,5,6 times a day] can easily reverse the progression of Chronic Cement Dermatitis and return skin health to the user. Neutralite Safety Solution is not a barrier type product that is applied before going to work thinking it will protect you all day. It won't. It must be applied after each contamination. IT SHOULD BE NOTED: The tool wash bucket water is as alkaline and dangerous as wet cement itself. Neutralize skin after washing tools.

Neutralite Safety Solution is not a medicine, it simply and safely neutralizes irritating agents found in wet cement.


Hexavalent Chromium found in wet cement is water soluble. Therefore it can soak into skin and eventually enter the skin's cells. There it can bind with cell protein and produce an allergic reaction. Neutralite converts Hexavalent Chromium to Trivalent Chromium. Trivalent Chromium is a solid and cannot prentrate skin cells. Neutralite reduces Hexavalent Chromium to undetectable limits in wet cement and greatly reduces the risk of allergic sensitization.

For more information call 800 850-3908

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