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Use of sodium hypochlorite may have harmful effects: AIIMS-D Doctor

ANI | Updated: May 01, 2020 20:20 IST

New Delhi [India], May 1 (ANI): The use of sodium hypochlorite, which is sprayed on people when they walk through a disinfectant tunnel, may have a harmful effect on them even if there is a slight variation in its concentration, said Dr Amandeep Singh, a senior resident doctor at AIIMS-Delhi on Friday.
"It has been seen that disinfectant tunnels have been installed at many places, and sodium hypochlorite solution is being used in the tunnel. Now sodium hypochlorite is a chlorine-based disinfectant, which is used on inanimate objects. Now for wound cleaning, we never use more than 0.5 per cent of its concentration," Dr Singh told ANI.
The tunnels through, which people walk while a mist of sodium hypochlorite solution, is sprayed on them to clear any viruses have been installed at various public places in the country.
"Some of the tunnels are even using one per cent concentration of sodium hypochlorite. There is no study so far which says that it is effective in killing the virus, which might be present on clothes or the human body. Hence, there are more chances of having harmful effects if you spray sodium hypochlorite on the body," added Dr Singh.

He further elaborated as to what all harmful effects it may have and said, "If somebody's eyes get exposed to it, they might experience irritation in the eyes. There can be skin irritation. If the mucus membrane is exposed to it, then people having chronic asthma and respiratory disorders, they may get bronchospasm."
He said that even a slight variation in the concentration of sodium hypochlorite may have harmful effects and people should instead take other preventive measures as wearing masks, washing hands frequently, to avoid contracting the virus.
The World Health Organisation (WHO) has also advised that bleach and disinfectant should be used carefully to disinfect surfaces only.

The Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare has already issued an advisory stating that spraying disinfectants like sodium hypochlorite is harmful. (ANI)