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What Are The Repercussions Of Accidental Ingestion Of Kerosene?

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Posted on Mon, 17 Oct 2016
Question: Hi,
My son drunk kerosin oil around 8:30pm today now is 2:40 am. First 30 min he cough dry and then is fine. He is admitted in ICU. But not telling anything just told need to admit 2- 3 days.
Is my son is fine. May I discharge from hospital in 20 hr. Because hospital charge per day is very high. I just waiting outside hospital and not able to decide anyrhings. PLZ help me
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Answered by Dr. Dr.Arnab (55 minutes later)
Brief Answer:
First 24-48 hrs is the most important phase..-

Detailed Answer:
Hello XXXXXXX XXXX, welcome to HCM,
I've gone through your query and understand your concern for your son,

It's too early to say anything as of now, I'd request you to just be patient and please don't try to discharge/shift from the ICU as it's extremely critical period..

You haven't mentioned how much quantity of kerosin had been ingested, but do note that even with a little amount ingested, the complications and after effects are quite severe and the first 24-48 hrs are considered as the most severe period (it can even extend up to 5 days depending on the extent of damage), and it's only just 6-7 hrs passed since the event..

Please try to find out if he tried to forcefully vomit it out, cause if it's done then the after effects will be even more serious..

He may appear fine to you immediately but the toxic effects of kerosin takes several hours to appear and in some individuals it may take few days (depending on the amount ingested, overall health condition, how soon got attended by the medical facility, how critically damaged and several other factors)..

The most significant after effect is the chemical pneumonitis which takes few hours to days to appear and presents itself with difficulty in breathing, excessive sputum and secretions, burning/choking sensation, hoarseness of voice and several others.. apart from this, there's also gastro-esophageal and oral mucosal damage causing severe burning sensation, difficulty swallowing, acid reflux symptoms, ulceration and in severe cases even chemical burn and narrowing of the food-pipe (the esophagus) and the gastric mucosa..

So you can understand this is a quite critical stage now, just be patient and try to get in touch with the ICU doctor's team who's taking care of him for further progress..

Yes, they're quite right that it'll need at least 2-3 days to comment on further well being as I've already explained..

He'll be under strict monitoring in the ICU and routine toxin level monitoring as well as blood gas analysis, renal and liver function testing, serial imaging studies including Chest X-rays and intravenous supportive management with strictly nil per mouth till clinically stable..He may also need a Upper GI Endoscopy to determine the extent of damage subsequently..

Let me know if there's any further queries, I'll be glad to help you further..

Let me know how he stays in the due course..

Take Care
Kind Regards

Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Arnab Banerjee
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Answered by
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Dr. Dr.Arnab

Critical Care Specialist

Practicing since :2012

Answered : 1479 Questions

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What Are The Repercussions Of Accidental Ingestion Of Kerosene?

Brief Answer: First 24-48 hrs is the most important phase..- Detailed Answer: Hello XXXXXXX XXXX, welcome to HCM, I've gone through your query and understand your concern for your son, It's too early to say anything as of now, I'd request you to just be patient and please don't try to discharge/shift from the ICU as it's extremely critical period.. You haven't mentioned how much quantity of kerosin had been ingested, but do note that even with a little amount ingested, the complications and after effects are quite severe and the first 24-48 hrs are considered as the most severe period (it can even extend up to 5 days depending on the extent of damage), and it's only just 6-7 hrs passed since the event.. Please try to find out if he tried to forcefully vomit it out, cause if it's done then the after effects will be even more serious.. He may appear fine to you immediately but the toxic effects of kerosin takes several hours to appear and in some individuals it may take few days (depending on the amount ingested, overall health condition, how soon got attended by the medical facility, how critically damaged and several other factors).. The most significant after effect is the chemical pneumonitis which takes few hours to days to appear and presents itself with difficulty in breathing, excessive sputum and secretions, burning/choking sensation, hoarseness of voice and several others.. apart from this, there's also gastro-esophageal and oral mucosal damage causing severe burning sensation, difficulty swallowing, acid reflux symptoms, ulceration and in severe cases even chemical burn and narrowing of the food-pipe (the esophagus) and the gastric mucosa.. So you can understand this is a quite critical stage now, just be patient and try to get in touch with the ICU doctor's team who's taking care of him for further progress.. Yes, they're quite right that it'll need at least 2-3 days to comment on further well being as I've already explained.. He'll be under strict monitoring in the ICU and routine toxin level monitoring as well as blood gas analysis, renal and liver function testing, serial imaging studies including Chest X-rays and intravenous supportive management with strictly nil per mouth till clinically stable..He may also need a Upper GI Endoscopy to determine the extent of damage subsequently.. Let me know if there's any further queries, I'll be glad to help you further.. Let me know how he stays in the due course.. Take Care Kind Regards