[Case of polymer fume fever with interstitial pneumonia caused by inhalation of polytetrafluoroethylene (Teflon)]

Chudoku Kenkyu. 2006 Jul;19(3):279-82.
[Article in Japanese]


A 30-year old man was admitted to our hospital with cough, slight fever, and dyspnea that he had developed several hours after inhaling the fumes produced from a Teflon-coated pan, after evaporation of the water in the pan. Chest radiography revealed diffuse infiltrations, and a computed tomography (CT) scan revealed patchy interstitial shadows in both lungs. In pulmonary function tests, the diffusing capacity of the lungs showed a moderate decrease. Leukocytosis and slight hypoxemia were observed. The patient recovered clinically in a few days without any specific treatment. We speculated that the pulmonary problems in this patient may have been induced by the products of thermal degradation of Teflon that were present in the fumes. When Teflon is heated, the fumes generated cause an influenza like syndrome (polymer fume fever) or cause severe toxic effects such as pulmonary edema, pneumonitis, and death in the exposed individual.

Publication types

  • Case Reports
  • English Abstract

MeSH terms

  • Acute Disease
  • Adult
  • Cooking and Eating Utensils*
  • Gases
  • Humans
  • Inhalation Exposure / adverse effects*
  • Lung Diseases, Interstitial / chemically induced*
  • Lung Diseases, Interstitial / diagnosis
  • Male
  • Polymers / adverse effects*
  • Polytetrafluoroethylene / adverse effects*
  • Respiratory Function Tests
  • Tomography, X-Ray Computed


  • Gases
  • Polymers
  • Polytetrafluoroethylene