Symptoms of Radiation Sickness
The severity of radiation sickness depends on the dose that was absorbed in the body. The greater the dose, the sicker a person gets. Moderate levels of radiation will cause people to feel symptoms such as nausea, vomiting, and pain a few hours after their exposure. They will feel extreme fatigue and all-over weakness, and could faint every now and then. The areas of skin exposed to radiation will appear like severe sunburn, then sores may form, and skin infection may develop.
After the first round of flu-like signs and symptoms, a victim may appear well for a brief period. Then severe and new symptoms may follow shortly as there will be loss of white blood cells and drop in the production of new blood cells. This may result in a loss of appetite, diarrhea, and fever.
Radiation poisoning can also cause bleeding in the nose, mouth, gums and rectum. Exposure to doses of 300 rems or more can produce symptoms such as hair loss, bleeding and shedding of the lining on the gastrointestinal tract. High levels of radiation can damage small blood vessels that could lead to heart failure and then death.
Possible Radiation Risks from Fukushima Plant
As of today, experts cannot determine the eventual impact of the radiation from the nuclear reactors in Japan . Radiation continues to soar and high level of cesium and other substances were detected. Leaking water at Fukushima Daiichi nuclear reactor 2 has been measured at 1,000 millisieverts /hour, which is 10 million times higher than the usual.
Most experts agree that even a low dose of ionizing radiation —as low as 100 millisieverts—can increase the risk to cancer. Exposure to one sievert of radiation could increase by 5% the lifetime risk to cancer. Children will have an increased risk of developing thyroid nodules and thyroid cancer.
Based on the status report on Japan’s nuclear plant crisis, radiation amounts from the damaged nuclear reactors are miniscule if compared to previous nuclear plant fallouts; but, unfortunately, even a small dose can have significant health effects, and much more on the young and the weak.
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