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ACUTE EXPOSURE INFORMATION
- Paris Green is an inorganic trivalent arsenic compound which also contains copper. It is an emerald green colored, crystalline powder. Although some absorption may occur from dermal contact or inhalation, most poisonings result from ingestion. Upper respiratory tract irritation may result from inhalation exposure.
- Direct contact may produce conjunctival irritation or a characteristic dermatitis. Other skin findings may be melanosis, hyperkeratosis and hyperhidrosis. Hair loss and trophic nail changes may also occur with chronic exposure.
- Systemic Paris Green poisoning is primarily due to the arsenic content, and is not different from any other arsenic poisoning. Chronic copper poisoning from Paris Green exposure is essentially unknown in humans. It is advisable to treat all arsenic compounds as highly toxic.
- Multiple keratoses, chronic lymphatic leukemia and macular degeneration have been tied to occupational exposure.
- Acute arsenic ingestion generally produces symptoms within 30 to 60 minutes, but onset may be delayed for several hours if ingested with food. A metallic or garlic taste, vomiting, abdominal pain, dysphagia, and profuse watery (rice-water-like) and sometimes bloody diarrhea may occur. Dehydration, intense thirst, and fluid-electrolyte disturbances are common. Hypovolemia from capillary leaking ("third spacing" of fluids) is a common early sign.
- Systemic arsenic poisoning from occupational exposure is uncommon. Arsenic workers have developed a hoarse voice; nasal irritation and possible perforation of the nasal septum; irritation of eyes, skin, and mucous membranes; and, rarely, cirrhosis of the liver. Nausea and vomiting are infrequent. Painful ulceration of the wrist and scrotal skin, lips, and nostrils may develop with dust exposure.
- The primary target organs initially are the gastrointestinal tract, heart, brain, and kidneys. Seizures and pulkonary edema can result from exposure. Eventually, the skin, bone marrow, and peripheral nervous system may be significantly damaged. The peripheral neuropathy appears similar regardless of the route of exposure.
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