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Doctor warns of potential burn risk from high-visibility clothing


Paul Hayes


7/10/2019 3:18:00 PM

The warning comes following what is believed to be the first reported case of burns from retro-reflective tape.

Man in high-visibility top
A emergency medicine specialist has warned of potential dangers of the safety clothing following the case of a man who suffered first-degree burns while wearing a high-visibility top.

Men and women wearing high-visibility clothing is one of the more common sights in urban Australia.
 
But a Perth doctor is warning of potential dangers of the safety clothing following the case of a man who suffered first-degree burns while wearing a high-visibility top and working outside.
 
In a letter to the editor of the Medical Journal of Australia (MJA), emergency medicine specialist Dr Ioana Vlad discussed the case of a ‘a 40‐year‐old man with no past medical history [who] presented to the emergency department complaining of a painful red rash across his back’.
 
The man took himself to the emergency department at the Sir Charles Gairdner Hospital after noticing the rash – which stretched across his back and coincided with the high-visibility band on his shirt – as he undressed at home after work.
 
‘The patient also reported that the high-visibility tape on his shirt often becomes extremely hot when he works out in the sun,’ Dr Vlad wrote.
 
‘And he has to change position so the shirt does not touch his skin in that area.’
 
The treatment for the first-degree burns included the use of painkillers and aloe vera.
 
While the injuries were not necessarily serious, Dr Vlad believes the ubiquity of high-visibility clothing means it is important people are aware of potential risks.
 
‘It could happen to other people as well, especially if they wear the same type of shirt and the same type of reflective tape, and especially if they work out in the sun and the sun shines directly onto the shirt,’ she wrote.
 
‘Workplaces mandating clothes with retroreflective tape should ensure that garments with the tape in areas touching the skin are not worn in very hot and sunny conditions and consider using removable vests instead.’



burns dermatology high visibility


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Dr Jitendra Natverlal Parikh   12/10/2019 9:59:56 PM

This is timely reminder considering onset of summer and proactive approach