Center for Injury Research and Prevention

Safety Interventions and Liquid Laundry Detergent Packet Exposures

TitleSafety Interventions and Liquid Laundry Detergent Packet Exposures
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2019
AuthorsGaw CE, Spiller HA, Casavant MJ, Chounthirath T, Smith GA
JournalPediatrics
Volume144
Issue1
Date Published06/2019
Type of ArticleJournal
ISSN1098-4275
KeywordsAccidents, Child, Consumer Product Safety, Detergents, Female, Home, Hospitalization, Humans, Laundering, Male, Poisoning, Product Labeling, Product Packaging, United States
Abstract

OBJECTIVES: To investigate exposures to liquid laundry detergent packets among children <6 years old in the United States and to evaluate the impact of the American Society for Testing and Materials voluntary product safety standard.

METHODS: Data from the National Poison Data System involving exposures to liquid laundry detergent packets from 2012 to 2017 were analyzed.

RESULTS: From January 2012 to December 2017, there were 72 947 single and polysubstance exposures to liquid laundry detergent packets. Most exposures (91.7%) were documented among children <6 years old. The annual number and rate of exposures for children <6 years old increased by 110.4% and 111.9%, respectively, from 2012 to 2015. From 2015 to 2017, the number and rate of exposures in this age group decreased by 18.0%. Among individuals ≥6 years old, the annual number and rate of exposures increased by 292.7% and 276.7%, respectively, from 2012 to 2017. Annual hospital admissions among children <6 years old increased by 63.4% from 2012 to 2015 and declined by 55.5% from 2015 to 2017. Serious outcomes among children <6 years old increased by 78.5% from 2012 to 2015 and declined by 32.9% from 2015 to 2017.

CONCLUSIONS: The number, rate, and severity of liquid laundry detergent packet exposures have decreased modestly in recent years among children <6 years old, likely attributable, in part, to the voluntary product safety standard and public awareness efforts. Exposures among older children and adults are increasing. Opportunities exist to strengthen the current product safety standard to further reduce exposures.

DOI10.1542/peds.2018-3117
Alternate JournalPediatrics
PubMed ID31160344