Kourtney Kardashian criticised for sharing conspiracy theory that blue masks cause cancer

Reality TV star shared claim with her 102 million Instagram followers

Olivia Petter
Wednesday 04 November 2020 08:49 GMT
(Getty Images)

Kourtney Kardashian has been criticised for sharing a conspiracy theory that blue single-use face masks, designed to protect people from coronavirus, can cause cancer.

On Saturday, the reality TV star shared a post claiming on her Instagram Story claiming that blue surgical face masks are “made of PTFE, a carcinogen made from synthetic fluoride”.

The text was accompanied by a picture of a disposable blue surgical mask that were historically worn by medical workers, but now are being adopted by the public during the pandemic.

“According to Cancer.Org it increases the risk of liver, testicle, pancreas, kidney and breast tumors + ulcerative colitis, thyroid disease, preeclampsia and high cholesterol [sic],” the text continued.

(Kourtney Kardashian/Instagram)

“High exposure can cause influenza-like symptoms and hemorrhaging in the lungs, leading to suffocation.”

Kardashian accompanied the post with a wide-eyed emoji and a head-exploding emoji.

The 41-year-old did not provide a link to accompany the Story.

There is currently no evidence to support the claim that Kardashian shared and the American Cancer Society has since issued a statement confirming this.

“There is no evidence to support the claim that the presence of PTFE in a mask causes cancer,” said Dr William Cance, chief medical and scientific officer of the ACS.

“As a surgical oncologist, I, along with thousands of colleagues in the health-care profession, have been wearing masks for years to protect patients from the spread of infections,” he told the New York Post.

PTFE is an acronym for polytetrafluoroethylene and is a man-made chemical that can be found on household items such as nonstick pans.

Social media users have been quick to criticise Kardashian for sharing the post without any scientific evidence.

“The scariest thing to happen on Halloween this year is Kourtney Kardashian posting this utterly ridiculous post about blue masks with no medical evidence or proof, it's just some random screenshot,” tweeted one person. 

“It’s one thing for a random people on social media to claim that masks cause cancer... it’s another for @kourtneykardash to be doing so on her Instagram stories to >100 million followers,” another added. 

The Independent has contacted a representative for Kardashian for comment.

Join our commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies


Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged inPlease refresh your browser to be logged in