In times of peace explosives are not a large factor in the general causes of industrial dermatitis. In wartime, however, dermatitis from explosives is a serious problem to those concerned with the prevention of industrial diseases.
Explosives may be classified in the following manner: (1) propellants, used to propel projectiles, and (2) military high explosives, used for bursting charges and for setting off the more stable high explosives (fig. 1).
The propellants are smokeless powder and black powder.
The military high explosives are subdivided, the more stable explosives being used for bursting charges, and the sensitive explosives for primers, fuses, boosters and detonators. Sensitive explosives are tetryl, mercury fulminate, lead azide, lead styphnate, sensol and nitroglycerin. Stable explosives are trinitrotoluene (TNT), amatol, ammonium picrate (explosive D), lyddite (chiefly picric acid), pentaerythratoltetranitrate (PETN), hexite (hexanitrodiphenylamine) and dinitrotoluene (DNT).
Tetryl, or trinitrophenylmethylnitramine, is a light yellow crystalline powder. It is made
SCHWARTZ L. DERMATITIS FROM EXPLOSIVES. JAMA. 1944;125(3):186–190. doi:10.1001/jama.1944.02850210008002