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Inhalation Injuries


There are a variety of substances you can inhale that can cause acute internal injuries. Particles in the air from fires and toxic fumes can damage your eyes and respiratory system. They also can make chronic heart and lung diseases worse.

Symptoms of acute inhalation injuries may include

  • Coughing and phlegm
  • A scratchy throat
  • Irritated sinuses
  • Shortness of breath
  • Chest pain or tightness
  • Headaches
  • Stinging eyes
  • A runny nose
  • If you already have asthma, it may get worse.

The best way to prevent inhalation injuries is to limit your exposure. If you smell or see smoke, or know that fires are nearby, you should leave the area if you are at greater risk from breathing smoke.

Environmental Protection Agency


  • (National Fire Protection Association)
  • (American Lung Association)
  • (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) - PDF Also in
  • (Burn Institute) - PDF
  • Lung problems and volcanic smog (Medical Encyclopedia) Also in Spanish
  • (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention)
  • (American Academy of Pediatrics) Also in

Clinical Trials

  • From the National Institutes of Health (National Institutes of Health)
  • From the National Institutes of Health (National Institutes of Health)

Journal Articles References and abstracts from MEDLINE/PubMed (National Library of Medicine)

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