Burn injuries during paint thinner sniffing

Burns. 1998 Dec;24(8):757-9. doi: 10.1016/s0305-4179(98)00103-x.


Thinner sniffing is popular among school children in Asian countries because it is readily available at low cost. Besides its toxicity to major organs, thinner inhalation is associated with various burn accidents. Four teenagers were admitted to the Burns Unit of the Prince of Wales Hospital over the period of 1996-1997. They sustained 3-25% TBSA flame burn and two of them had inhalation injuries as a result of the ignition of a cigarette during thinner sniffing. None of them had evidence of thinner intoxication as shown by blood tests. In the management of their acute burn injuries, their hidden social and family problems were explored. With the cooperation of different disciplines, early psychosocial intervention was given and their behavioral and psychological disturbances were successfully managed.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adolescent Behavior
  • Body Surface Area
  • Burns, Chemical / etiology*
  • Burns, Chemical / pathology
  • Burns, Inhalation / etiology*
  • Family Relations
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Peer Group
  • Smoking / adverse effects
  • Social Behavior Disorders / psychology
  • Social Behavior Disorders / therapy
  • Solvents / adverse effects*
  • Substance-Related Disorders / complications*
  • Substance-Related Disorders / psychology


  • Solvents