Pediatric tea tree oil aspiration treated with surfactant in the emergency department

Pediatr Emerg Care. 2015 Apr;31(4):279-80. doi: 10.1097/PEC.0000000000000234.


Tea tree oil is an essential oil containing a mixture of aromatic hydrocarbons. We describe an 18-month-old male patient who ingested tea tree oil, developed central nervous system depression, respiratory distress, and received early emergency department treatment with surfactant. Early treatment of hydrocarbon pneumonitis with surfactant has not been previously described. Early administration of surfactant should be further evaluated for treatment of hydrocarbon aspiration.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Deglutition
  • Depression / chemically induced*
  • Emergency Service, Hospital*
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Male
  • Pulmonary Surfactants / therapeutic use*
  • Respiratory Insufficiency / chemically induced*
  • Tea Tree Oil / administration & dosage
  • Tea Tree Oil / adverse effects*


  • Pulmonary Surfactants
  • Tea Tree Oil