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kerosene

Pronunciation: ker'o-sen

Definition: A mixture of petroleum hydrocarbons, chiefly of the methane series; the fifth fraction in the distillation of petroleum, used as fuel for lamps and stoves, as a degreaser and cleaner, and in insecticides. Contact on human skin can lead to irritation and infection; inhalation may cause headache, drowsiness, coma; swallowing causes irritation, vomiting, and diarrhea. Vomiting should not be induced, as aspiration of vomitus causes pneumonitis.

[G. keros, wax, + -ene]

Further information

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© Copyright 2018 Wolters Kluwer. All Rights Reserved. Review date: Sep 19, 2016.

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