# Why is mercury much more toxic when inhaled than injected?

Following wikipedia:

Cases of systemic toxicity from accidental swallowing are rare, and attempted suicide via intravenous injection does not appear to result in systemic toxicity,[1] though it is still causes damage by physicaly blocking blood vessels both at the site of injection and the lungs.

Shouldn't both inhalation and IV injection of elemental mercury produce the same result, namely, mercury in the bloodstream?

I guess the answer is that mercury atoms stick with each other very well (e.g. high surface tension in comparison to most other liquids $\gamma_{293K}^{\ce{Hg}} = 0.47 \text{ N/m}$, where $\gamma_{293K}^{\ce{H2O}} = 0.073 \text{ N/m}$ [1]) and that this continues to happen in the blood stream. Such clumps of mercury are not able to pass the blood brain barrier (BBB) effectively, especially in comparison to finely divided dissolved vapor, which is transported trough the BBB by the formation of a complex with cysteine.