Caustic substances are chemicals that cause burns.
Caustic substance poisoning happens when you swallow a chemical that burns you. The burn can be to your lips, mouth, throat, stomach, or esophagus. Your esophagus is the tube that connects your throat to your stomach.
This type of burn may scar or create holes (perforations). This can lead to severe, life-threatening infections.
If you or someone else may have swallowed a caustic substance, call for emergency medical assistance (911 in most areas of the United States).
If the caustic substance is strong or burns a hole in your esophagus or stomach, you may also feel:
Severe poisoning can kill you.
If your esophagus becomes damaged, you're more likely to someday develop cancer of the esophagus.
If you have mild burns, doctors will:
If you have severe burns, doctors will:
Don't try to throw up a caustic substance. Throwing it up causes as much damage as swallowing it.