No clinically relevant effects in children after accidental ingestion of Panaeolina foenisecii (lawn mower's mushroom)

Clin Toxicol (Phila). 2017 Mar;55(3):217-220. doi: 10.1080/15563650.2016.1271129. Epub 2017 Jan 11.


Introduction: Panaeolina foenisecii is one of the most common and widely distributed lawn mushrooms in Europe and North America, and frequently involved in accidental mushroom ingestion, mainly in children. Nevertheless, there is contradictory information regarding the toxicity profile of P. foenisecii in the literature. Objective of the study was to assess clinical effects with particular attention on psychoactive properties of P. foenisecii in case of accidental oral exposure.

Methods: This observational case series is based on prospectively collected data on mushroom poisoning using a structured data collection form, and it was performed in seven poisons centres in Germany and Switzerland. Inclusion criteria were accidental ingestion of at least one cap of P. foenisecii identified by a mycologist, and a follow up of at least 4 hours.

Results: Nineteen cases met all inclusion criteria, and only children were involved with a mean age of 3 years. They ingested 1-2 mushrooms in 14 cases and 3-5 mushrooms in five cases. Three patients received a single dose of activated charcoal. Sixteen out of 19 cases did not develop any symptoms, 2/19 complained of minor abdominal discomfort. One child was temporarily mildly hyperactive, and this was the only patient observed in a hospital for 12 hours. None of the children showed signs of hallucinations.

Conclusions: This multicentre study demonstrates that the typically small amounts of P. foenisecii ingested by children probably do not lead to clinically significant symptoms.

Keywords: Lawn mushroom; Panaeolus; hallucinogenic; mycologist; pediatric; poisoning; psilocybin.

Publication types

  • Observational Study

MeSH terms

  • Agaricales*
  • Antidotes / therapeutic use*
  • Charcoal / therapeutic use*
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Female
  • Germany
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Male
  • Mushroom Poisoning / epidemiology
  • Mushroom Poisoning / therapy*
  • Poison Control Centers
  • Prospective Studies
  • Switzerland


  • Antidotes
  • Charcoal