Polymer Fume Fever

(aka Teflon Flu)

Exposure

  • Thermal Breakdown of Chlorofluoropolymers
    • Polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE/Teflon) (see also [[Polytetrafluoroethylene]]: occurs with PTFE/Teflon heated to low temperatures (acute lung injury-ARDS can occur with PTFE/Teflon heated to high temperatures)
    • Other Compounds

Physiology

  • Inhalational Exposure to Polymer Fumes
    • Possibly cytokine-mediated

Diagnosis

  • CXR/Chest CT: usually normal (if infiltrates are present, should suggest alternative diagnosis)
  • CBC: leukocytosis may be seen
  • ABG: hypoxemia is usually absent
  • FOB: marked influx of neutrophils

Clinical

(onset of symptoms 4-8 hrs after acute inhalation of fumes or dust)

  • Mild Dyspnea (see Dyspnea, [[Dyspnea]])
  • Cough (see Cough, [[Cough]])
  • Fever (see Fever, [[Fever]])
  • Flu-Like Syndrome
    • Malaise
    • Chills
    • Myalgia

Treatment

  • Self-Limited: usually spontaneously resolves within 12-48 hrs

References

  • xxx