Hydrogen fluoride exposure might result in acute to chronic health problems depending on the level of exposure. Hydrogen fluoride (HF) is a colourless gas with a pungent odour. It’s soluble and non-flammable in all quantities of water. Furthermore, hydrogen fluoride is widely used to refine, process, and extract oil, brick, rock, and metal. Numerous chemical syntheses and processes use it as an intermediate. It is utilized to prevent and eliminate rust and frost glass, polish, and etch.

Despite hydrogen fluoride having a strong and unpleasant odour, it must not be relied on to offer enough exposure warning. Although a mild acid, its capacity to enter tissue makes it exceedingly dangerous. Hydrogen fluoride may enter the body systemically by eye, or skin contact, inhalation, or consumption.


The timing and degree of adverse health consequences from hydrogen fluoride exposure are determined by the level of hydrogen fluoride and the exposure period for all exposure methods. Hydrogen fluoride exposure might pose the following symptoms:

  • Irritation
  • Cardiac arrhythmic
  • Kidney problem
  • Gastric pain
  • Headache
  • Hyperkalemia
  • Erythema
  • Vomiting
  • Swelling
  • Stomach pain
  • Weakness
  • Nausea
  • Liver damage
  • Pulmonary edema
  • Hypocalcemia
  • Respiratory problem


Before starting work and at regular intervals afterwards, the following are advised for frequent or possibly high exposure.

  • Lung function test

The following are advised if symptoms appear when overexposure is thought to have occurred.

  • Urine test: Fluoride levels in urine over 4 mg/litre indicate overexposure.
  • Testing for the function of the liver and kidneys.
  • After severe overexposure, consider a chest X-ray
  • Bone density scan (DEXA)

Along with an examination, every assessment should include a thorough history of previous and current symptoms.


Supportive care is the focus of the first treatment. It involves keeping an eye out for systemic hydrogen fluoride exposure symptoms. Treatment is a continuum of care that includes quick treatment, quick cleaning, and evacuation from the area with a fluoride-binding agent. People who have had hydrogen fluoride exposure should get healthcare right away. Your doctor may suggest or use products to help counteract the consequences of exposure.

  • Immediate decontamination is necessary because of the quick skin penetration of hydrogen fluoride and the significant exposure to the fluoride ion. Medicines, liquids, and calcium-containing gels may neutralize the fluoride ion.
  • Since the degree of pain is a sign of therapeutic success, the extreme pain of hydrogen fluoride burns must not be repressed with local anesthetics.
  • ocular frailty on rare cases

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