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  1. #1
    PeterB's Avatar
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    XTOL Part A in water - fume inhalation causing diarrhoea

    I mixed up a fresh batch of XTOL last night in my darkroom, and after adding Part A (Phenidone+sodium sulphite) to the 31degC pure water then mixing for 5 mins, I had a sudden bout of diarrhoea !

    I was wearing this gas mask with TWO of these organic gas filters, plus goggles and gloves.

    I had my extraction fan plus ducted air-conditioning ventilation going full speed. Despite all my precautions I got mucosal irritation in my nose and throat and then diarrhoea ! I'm assuming the gas being liberated and inhaled was sulphurous acid. Both symptoms are documented side effects of exposure to sodium sulphite and sulphurous acid.

    Clearly I need to do this in either a fume cupboard or outside again (like I used to).

  2. #2

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    Just a simple question: if you're allergic to fumes and powder developers, why don't you just use a liquid one?

  3. #3
    Photo Engineer's Avatar
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    That mixture will not cause your "symptom" unless it is injested, and perhaps not even then. It usually causes other symptoms in those who are allergic to Sulfite or Phenidone.

    PE

  4. #4
    PeterB's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Alessandro Serrao View Post
    Just a simple question: if you're allergic to fumes and powder developers, why don't you just use a liquid one?
    . I've never had that problem before and have always mixed my XTOL outside. Additionally I have way too much testing and experienced devoted to XTOL and it ticks all the other boxes.

  5. #5
    Poisson Du Jour's Avatar
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    "Both symptoms are documented side effects of exposure to sodium sulphite and sulphurous acid."
    I think you have something a bit more serious underlying there which cannot (conveniently or otherwise) be attributed to sulphorous acid of sulphite.
    “The photographer must determine how he wants the finished print to look before he exposes the negative.
    Before releasing the shutter, he must seek 'the flame of recognition,' a sense that the picture would reveal
    the greater mystery of things...more clearly than the eyes see."
    ~Edward Weston, 1922.

  6. #6

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    hi peter

    while i don't use xtol anymore
    i have never heard of anyone getting physically ill
    from mixing it. i always used to like watching it
    change colors when i mixed it

    sorry to ask this, but might you have had something to eat or drink
    previous to you mixing the chemistry ( like angry chicken ) that might
    have picked a fight with other things in your system ?

  7. #7
    PeterB's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Photo Engineer View Post
    That mixture will not cause your "symptom" unless it is injested, and perhaps not even then. It usually causes other symptoms in those who are allergic to Sulfite or Phenidone. PE
    Hi PE, an XTOL MSDS and one for sulphurous acid lists the two symptoms I experienced. I think the filters in my gas mask weren't working or the seal was not tight. I had the solution heated to about 31degC and could feel the fumes slightly acrid in my eyes as I didn't have sealing goggles on.

    "Inhalation:
    Part A: Harmful if inhaled. Airborne dust irritating. May cause irritation to the mucous membranes and upper respiratory tract. Some asthmatics or sulphite-sensitive individuals may experience wheezing, chest tightness,stomach upset, hives, faintness, weakness and diarrhea."

  8. #8
    PeterB's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jnanian View Post
    sorry to ask this, but might you have had something to eat or drink previous to you mixing the chemistry ( like angry chicken ) that might have picked a fight with other things in your system ?
    Not impossible but the timing was uncanny. I had nothing unusual or suspicious to eat that day and none of my other 4 family members had diarrhoea.

  9. #9
    Photo Engineer's Avatar
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    Your reference MSDS refers to injestion, not inhalation. See my previous post.

    The inhalation comments in your second paragraph is more to the point. If you inhale it, you cough, sneeze and have difficulty breathing.

    So, I maintain that if you had the symptoms you did, it was either ingestion or it was something you ate. If it was the dust being inhaled you would cough, sneeze, wheeze and perhaps have a swollen tongue and nasal passages, and perhaps difficulty swallowing. I have seen this.

    PE

  10. #10

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    Maybe you had better switch to Ilford DD-X, HC-110 or one of the other liquid developers. I have myself experienced a nasal irritation when mixing a certain developer and I know that is exactly what caused it. I learned my lesson the hard way. JohnW

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