Lead Exposures and Biological Responses in Military Weapons Systems: Aerosol Characteristics and Acute Lead Effects among U.S. Army Artilleryman - Final Report
Final rept. Jun 1986-Jul 1989
ARGONNE NATIONAL LAB IL DIV OF BIOLOGICAL AND MEDICAL RESEARCH
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This study was to determine the concentration and chemical nature of lead Pb aerosols produced during the firing of artillery and to determine the exposures and biological responses of crew members exposed to lead aerosols during such firing. The concentrations of lead-containing aerosols at crew positions depended on wind conditions, with higher concentrations when firing into a head wind. Aerosol concentrations were highest in the muzzle blast zone. Concentrations of lead in the blood of crew members rose during the first 12 days of exposure to elevated airborne lead concentrations and then leveled off. There was no rapid decrease in blood lead concentrations after completion of firing. Small decreases in hematocrit and small increases in free erythrocyte porphyrin were correlated with increasing exposure to airborne lead. These changes were reversed by seven weeks after firing. Changes in nerve conduction velocity had borderline statistical significance to airborne lead exposure. In measuring nerve conduction velocity, differences in skin temperature must be taken into account.
- Weapons Effects (Biological)