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‘Hundreds of deaths’ may be linked to creams

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Media captionTest demonstrates burn danger of being subjected to paraffin-based ointments

Hundreds of fire fatalities may be linked to the use of skin ointments containing paraffin, a senior firefighter cautions.

If people use the creams regularly but do not often change clothes or bedding, paraffin residue can soak into the fabric and act as an accelerant when it comes into contact with a cigarette or a flame from a heater.

A BBC investigation found most ointments do not carry warnings despite the risk.

The medicines regulator is conducting a security review into the creams.

Last March a BBC investigation discovered 37 deaths were linked to skin creams containing paraffin in England since 2010. It is believed there have been a further eight demises since November 2016.

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