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Notes from the field: exposures to discarded sulfur mustard munitions - Mid-Atlantic and New England States, 2004-2012.

Authors
Fendick-R; King-JC; Tincher-T; Radke-M; Begluitti-G; Cruz-M; Keim-M; Schwartz-M; Delaney-L
Source
MMWR 2013 Apr; 62(16):315-316
NIOSHTIC No.
20042509
Abstract
Before the 1970s, the United States sometimes disposed of at sea excess, obsolete, or unserviceable munitions, including chemical munitions. Chemical munitions known to have been disposed of at sea included munitions filled with sulfur mustard, a vesicant (i.e., an agent that causes chemical burns or blisters of the skin and mucous membranes. Signs and symptoms of exposure to a mustard agent can include redness and blistering of the skin, eye irritation, rhinorrhea, hoarseness, shortness of breath, and (rarely) diarrhea and abdominal discomfort. Since 2004, CDC has received notification of three separate incidents of exposure to sulfur mustard munitions. In one incident, a munition was found with ocean-dredged marine shells used to pave a driveway. The other two incidents involved commercial clam fishing operations. This report highlights the importance of considering exposure to sulfur mustard in the differential diagnosis of signs and symptoms compatible with exposure to a vesicant agent, especially among persons involved with clam fishing or sea dredging operations.
Keywords
Munitions-industry; Chemical-properties; Chemical-reactions; Exposure-levels; Risk-factors; Skin; Skin-exposure; Skin-irritants; Sulfur-compounds; Humans; Men; Women; Mustard-gas; Case-studies; Chemical-warfare-agents; Military-personnel
CODEN
MMWRB6
CAS No.
7704-34-9
Publication Date
20130426
Document Type
Journal Article
Email Address
ttincher@cdc.gov
Fiscal Year
2013
NTIS Accession No.
NTIS Price
Identifying No.
B20130520
Issue of Publication
16
ISSN
0892-3787
NIOSH Division
EPRO
Source Name
Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report
State
DE; NY; GA
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