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Girls suffer second-degree burns from fruit

california massive blisters chemical reaction lime juice phytophotodermatitis

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#1 Hum

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Posted 07 September 2013 - 16:15

It was supposed to be a normal play day for five friends splashing in a pool in the back yard.

It ended with the group of girls in horrific pain and eventually intensive care in hospital after they all suffered second-degree burns.

The five had spent the day in the pool, splashing around and having fun, The Hanford Sentinel reports.What at first seemed to be overexposure to the sun blossomed into softball-sized blisters and second-degree burns.

Stephanie Ellwanger's girls, Jewels, 12, and Jazmyn, 9, wound up spending several days in an intensive care unit, hooked up to morphine to manage the pain. They stayed in hospital two weeks. Now they're not allowed out in the sun for at least six months. If at all.

But what caused the Ellwanger girls and their three friends - Reyghan, Candy and Bailey - to end up with massive blisters and peeling skin was a mystery.

Doctors were stumped.

Ellwanger, of Hanford, California, later remembered that the girls played with limes from a neighbour's tree, squeezing the fruits and splashing in the juice.

After a Google search and some time trying to convince dubious medical staff, the girls were diagnosed with phytophotodermatitis, described as "a chemical reaction [to the lime juice] that makes bare skin hypersensitive to ultraviolet light."

It’s caused by contact with photosensitizing compounds which occur naturally in some fruits and vegetables — like limes.

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#2 Kondrath

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Posted 07 September 2013 - 16:16

Wow. Seems like only a diagnosis that House would come up with. 



#3 OP Hum

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Posted 08 September 2013 - 00:08

I'm glad that limes are on my BLAAAH list.



#4 blerk

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Posted 08 September 2013 - 00:21

Another example in the news recently, this time in the UK and the compounds from a giant hogweed rather than limes. (If you're particularly squeamish, avoid the picture of the burn further down the page but the picture really isn't bad at all...)

 

dailymail.co.uk



#5 +Yorak

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Posted 08 September 2013 - 00:40

The title is a bit misleading. The lime juice itself did not burn them, it made their skin hypersensitive to ultraviolet light.



#6 Javik

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Posted 08 September 2013 - 00:43

Wow. Seems like only a diagnosis that House would come up with. 

 

This was such an unusual scenario it really does sound like a House plot.



#7 Growled

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Posted 08 September 2013 - 01:24

Just when you think you've heard it all.....



#8 Crisp

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Posted 08 September 2013 - 10:26

I'm glad that limes are on my BLAAAH list.

 

I wouldn't say no to some key lime pie. :shiftyninja:



#9 killerninja

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Posted 08 September 2013 - 10:45

They shouldn't have touched those limes.



#10 BiGdUsTy

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Posted 08 September 2013 - 11:12

I grow limes, lemons & oranges in the backyard and I have never seen this happen before.  :huh:  Then again I make pie's, juice & drinks from my fruit not play with it.



#11 killerninja

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Posted 08 September 2013 - 11:24

I grow limes, lemons & oranges in the backyard and I have never seen this happen before.  :huh:  Then again I make pie's, juice & drinks from my fruit not play with it.

 

You should. You'll never know how fun it is unless you try it.



#12 AsherGZ

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Posted 08 September 2013 - 12:49

My grandma used to make this lotion by mixing lime juice and glycerine for keeping skin moisturised during winters. She used to slather us in it whenever we went out as kids and none of us experienced anything like this ever. But maybe this has something to do with the weird skin pigmentation you white people have.



#13 ilovetonetwork

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Posted 08 September 2013 - 12:55

I wouldn't say no to some key lime pie. :shiftyninja:

the key lime pie is a lie



#14 OP Hum

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Posted 08 September 2013 - 13:05

... juice & drinks from my fruit not play with it.

I played with my banana.



#15 Anibal P

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Posted 08 September 2013 - 19:38

At the rate the younger generations are going they will be allergic to life itself. I remember the good old days when people were only allergic to work