Skip Navigation U.S. Department of Health and Human Services
Agency for Healthcare Research Quality
Archive print banner
Pediatric Terrorism and Disaster Preparedness

Public Health Emergency Preparedness

This resource was part of AHRQ's Public Health Emergency Preparedness program, which was discontinued on June 30, 2011, in a realignment of Federal efforts.

This information is for reference purposes only. It was current when produced and may now be outdated. Archive material is no longer maintained, and some links may not work. Persons with disabilities having difficulty accessing this information should contact us at: Let us know the nature of the problem, the Web address of what you want, and your contact information.

Please go to for current information.

Table 5.7. Medical Treatment of Riot Control Agent Exposure

Affected Organ/Symptoms Treatment




Albuterol 0.5% inhaled:
   <15 kg: 2.5 mg (0.5 mL in 2 mL normal saline).
   >15 kg: 5.0 mg (1.0 mL in 2 mL normal saline).
Ipratropium bromide inhaleda: >2 yr: 500 µg (1 vial).


Atropine, IV or IM: 0.02 mg/kg/dose (min 0.1 mg).
Glycopyrrolate, IV or IM: 0.004 mg/kg/dose (max 0.1 mg).
Decontamination Remove and discard contacts.
Copious irrigation with normal saline.
If CS powder present, blow out of eyes using fan, avoiding contamination of space downwind.
Pain Topical anesthetic (tetracaine 1%, proparacaine 1%)b: 1 drop to each eye (apply before irrigation)
Decontamination Copious irrigation with soap and water (may transiently increase symptoms).
Do not use bleach (hypochlorite)c.

Oral antihistamines (H1 receptor blockers):
   Diphenhydramine 5 mg/kg/day divided into 4 doses or
   Hydroxyzine 2 mg/kg/day divided into 4 doses or
   Equivalent medication.

Erythema, dermatitis

Topical steroid preparation, apply sparingly BID to affected area.
   Mild potency on face and genitalia (e.g., hydrocortisone 1% cream).
   Moderate to high potency on remainder of body (e.g., hydrocortisone 2% ointment, fluocinolone acetonide 0.025% ointment).
Ensure proper decontamination.

Vesicles, bullae Burn dressings with topical antibiotic (silver sulfadiazine 1%).

Notes: BID = twice a day; IV = intravenous; IM = intramuscular.

a For severe bronchospasm. Do not give ipratropium bromide to patients with peanut allergy.
b Do not give to patients with allergy to local anesthetics.
c Bleach may increase riot agent skin exposure and exacerbate erythema, vesiculation, and blistering.

Return to Document


The information on this page is archived and provided for reference purposes only.


AHRQ Advancing Excellence in Health Care