Skin and soft tissue necrosis from calcium chloride in a deicer

J Emerg Med. 2007 Jan;32(1):41-4. doi: 10.1016/j.jemermed.2006.05.030.


Calcium chloride salt is the principle ingredient of many commercially available deicers. Calcium chloride melts snow and ice by its osmotic action. We present a case of skin and soft tissue necrosis associated with the use of a calcium chloride-containing deicer. Although calcium chloride is known to produce soft tissue necrosis if it extravasates during intravenous administration, necrosis and skin sloughing has rarely been described after topical exposure to this salt. Calcium chloride likely produces tissue injury from the heat liberated by mixing calcium chloride with water (exothermic reaction) and from direct calcium deposits in the skin (calcinosis cutis) and soft tissue.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Burns, Chemical / etiology*
  • Burns, Chemical / therapy
  • Calcium Chloride / adverse effects*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Ice
  • Necrosis / chemically induced
  • Skin / pathology*


  • Ice
  • Calcium Chloride