Accession Number:

ADP013407

Title:

Late Hematologic Complications of Mustard Gas

Descriptive Note:

Corporate Author:

BAGHIATALLAH UNIV OF MEDICAL SCIENCES TEHRAN (IRAN)

Personal Author(s):

Report Date:

2001-09-01

Pagination or Media Count:

5.0

Abstract:

Chemical warfare agents in general and mustard gas in particular were used by Iraq against Iranian combatants during the Iraq - Iran war from 1981 to 1988. Mustard affects many organs such as the skin, eyes, and lungs, as well as the gastrointestinal, endocrine, and hematopoietic system. Although some of these complications are transient or treatable in the early phases, late complications may remain for years. Alkylating effects of mustard gas disturb the DNA of hematopoietic cells. High-dose exposure has a cytotoxic effect on hematopoietic stem cells and pancytopenia has been seen in Iranian combatants. Low-dose effects on this system may appear years later and follow-up studies are needed to determine these adverse effects. One study showed initial marked lymphopenia in 36 of exposed patients while during the recovery phase lymphocyte counts increased to greater than 40 in 18 of patients. Increase in lymphocyte protease activity in human peripheral blood due to mustard exposure has been repoited. In another study, some neutrophil function tests remained intact despite mustard poisoning. There are thousands of handicapped patients who suffer from adverse effects of chemical warfare poisoning in Iran. We undertook this hematological survey to determine and assess the late complications of mustard gas poisoning.

Subject Categories:

  • Toxicology
  • Chemical, Biological and Radiological Warfare

Distribution Statement:

APPROVED FOR PUBLIC RELEASE