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Self-Reported Respiratory Health Effects Following CS Riot Control Agent Exposure in Army Officer Trainees

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Technical Report

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Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences Bethesda United States

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The riot control agent RCA o-chlorobenzylidene malononitrile CS is used to facilitate a realistic training environment as part of a military training task known as mask confidence training MCT in which soldiers enter an enclosed structure containing a concentration of CS, perform a variety of tasks, and ultimately remove masks prior to exiting the chamber. The CS causes immediate but transient ocular, respiratory, and dermal irritation. This research prospectively studied the association between post-MCT symptoms of self-reported acute respiratory illness and CS exposure among a cohort of74 officer trainees enrolled in a U.S. Army Basic Officer Leadership Course BOLC held June 12th through July 25th, 2015. Developing new-onset symptoms of acute respiratory illness during the week following MCT was dependent on exposure levels above 1.5 times the Immediately Dangerous to Life and Health IDLH concentration3.00 mgm3 which was also associated with three excess cases of acute respiratory illness symptoms per 25 participants compared with exposure below 3.00 mgm3.

Subject Categories:

  • Medicine and Medical Research
  • Anatomy and Physiology
  • Chemical, Biological and Radiological Warfare

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