The phosgene poisoning: the effects of gas on humans

The poison gas phosgene

Phosgene is a suffocating gas, which can be used in chemical industry, pharmaceutical industry and military industry. This chemical compound of chlorine and carbon dioxide. Poisoning occurs after the inhalation of vapors and is accompanied by severe damage to the respiratory system. Such patients require emergency hospitalization to provide intensive medical care.

Ways of infection and effects on the body of phosgene

Poisonous gas phosgene is a colorless gaseous substance. The smell is reminiscent of rotten hay or rotten fruit. This substance has a boiling point of 8.2 ° C, it is heavier than air. So common in the environment, the gas quickly settles on clothes and other surfaces.

The phosgene poisoning has been observed in such cases:

  • industrial accidents with release of toxic substances;
  • the accident of vehicles carrying tanks of toxic gases;
  • military conflicts with the use of weapons of mass destruction.

The phosgene poisoning carries a risk of death. Dangerous gas concentration is considered to be in an amount of 0.5 mg/cubic meter. And experience the unpleasant smell of people can with 4.4 mg/cubic meter. This implies that toxic substances begin to act on the person quickly.

After inhaling poisonous fumes in the pulmonary tissues of the decomposition of toxins, which is accompanied by release of carbon dioxide and subsidence of hydrochloric acid. In the formation of a large number of decomposition products, the body is not able to neutralize them.

Acute phosgene poisoning causes pulmonary edema, in which a person suffers from oxygen starvation. This condition of the body can result in cardiac arrest and death.

Symptoms of phosgene poisoning, severe intoxication with gas

The effects of gas on the body causes the following clinical picture:

  • pain in the eyes;
  • dryness and tickle in the nasopharynx;
  • a feeling of tightness and pressure in chest;
  • headaches and dizziness;
  • discomfort and heaviness in the upper abdomen;
  • an acute attack of dry cough;
  • nausea and periodic vomiting;
  • a sudden increase in the number of respiratory movements, which become superficial.
  • a decrease in daily diuresis that often ends with enuresis.
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Symptoms tend to sudden disappearance after eliminating the effect of the toxic factor. Acute phosgene poisoning is diagnosed with a specific symptoms:

  • the breath rate increases with a simultaneous decrease in the number of heartbeats;
  • a progressive decrease in blood pressure;
  • General malaise on the background of anemia.

Duration of clinical symptoms is 4-24 hours. If during this period the patient had developed swelling of the lungs, the prognosis becomes favorable.

Compound of chlorine and carbon dioxide does not smell. This can lead to significant poisoning of the body. Symptoms of severe intoxication appear in this form:

  • the increase in shortness of breath that bothers the patient in active and passive state;
  • psycho-emotional excitement expressed concern for his life;
  • cyanosis and pallor of the skin;
  • the human exposure to the gas causes acute lung and heart failure.

Diagnosis of poisoning

A timely diagnosis often allows you to save the patient’s life. Diagnostics is conducting the activities listed below.

  • Visual inspection of the patient, in which the expert drew attention to the color of the skin and the respiratory activity of the muscles of the chest.
  • Palpation of regional lymph nodes.
  • Auscultation of the lungs. While listening to the respiratory system, the doctor notes the asymmetry of the lungs and signs of hard breathing.
  • General full blood count. In the circulatory system this drastically reduces the amount of hemoglobin.
  • Laboratory analysis of urine, the properties of which change due to the presence of traces of protein and single erythrocytes.
  • Radiography of the chest cavity.

The main treatment methods

First aid in such cases, it is directly in the area of toxic poisoning. Possibly man should withdraw from the zone of destruction of the gas.

The patient should be freed from tight clothes, especially in the chest and neck. Resuscitation include:

  • stimulation of respiratory activity due to the introduction of special anti-smoke mixture. This antidote, as a rule, is in the hospital;
  • the carrying out of artificial ventilation of lungs and external heart massage.

After the patient has been admitted to hospital poison him provide the following therapeutic procedures:

  • the patient, who is in a horizontal position, connects the ventilator with pure oxygen;
  • lavage of the gastrointestinal tract with a solution of potassium permanganate;
  • the reception of the copper sulfate. This antidote should preferably be taken every 15 minutes for two days;
  • if toxic gas was trapped on the skin, doctors recommend that abundantly rinse with a soap solution;
  • to eliminate possible allergic edema doctors prescribe the patient to undergo a course of antihistamines. Also, in such cases an antiseptic for the treatment of the epidermis.

After getting rid of the main symptoms of the toxic action of phosgene is eliminated by using a restorative treatment or sanatorium-resort therapy.

Prevention of poisoning by phosgene

Protection of man from exposure to toxic gas requires the observance of some rules, listed below.

  • Ensuring appropriate conditions of storage and transportation of toxic industrial substances.
  • Strict adherence to safety measures when operating hazardous production conditions.
  • Timely diagnosis of pathological conditions.
  • The provision of comprehensive intensive care.
  • Passing periodic maintenance inspection.

Forecast poganovo intoxication

Description of the clinical picture of the disease indicates the need for timely medical care that may affect the preservation of the life of the patient. The prognosis of the disease in the absence of pulmonary edema is considered to be favorable. In such cases, after eliminating the symptoms of intoxication is returned to its usual way of life.

The negative Outlook of poisoning doctors put patients with symptoms of acute respiratory failure. There is a high probability of death.