"DIOXINS" - What are they?
- "Dioxin" is a general name for a large chain of chemical compounds with similar structures made up of Carbon, Oxygen, Hydrogen and Chlorine atoms that resemble white-crystalline needles.
- The number of CHLORINE atoms and their positions is what determines the toxicity of different dioxins.
- The most toxic being "2,3,7,8-Tetrachlorodibenzo-p-dioxin" also known as TCDD - which holds an 8-year half-life within the human body.
- Dioxins are highly toxic, cancer-causing agents that cause reproductive and development issues, interferes with hormone production, impairs immune function and neurological functioning.
- Burning certain metal products can release dioxins into the air, especially metals containing copper, chlorophenols, herbicides and plastics (Dioxins were the contaminant used in Vietnams' Agent Orange herbicide).
- "CDD" - Chlorinated dibenzo-p-dioxins and "CDF" - Chlorinated dibenzofurans are not created intentionally or naturally, formation of those occurs as a result of human activity such as burning trash (epa.gov).
What SYMPTOMS/illnesses are common after Dioxin exposure?
- "Chloracne" - a disfiguring form of painful acne that appears as blackheads/cysts/pustules that are associated with exposures to chlorinated dioxins and dibenzofurans.
- The lesions are commonly found on the face, cheeks, behind the ears, armpits and groin area and usually appears weeks to months after exposures.
- Chloracnegens are "fat-solube" meaning they remain in the body tissues for long periods following exposures.
- The chloracne activates the "immune cascade" and triggers an inflammatory response related to the persistent toxin in the body; the toxin activates a series of receptors promoting macrophage and neutrophil release which causes the visual skin response and painful stimuli.
- Treatment(s) begin with removing the veteran away from the causing agent and source, afterwards treatment is focused on symptom-management. Chloracne is highly resistent to any type of medications and antibiotics and a cure does not currently exist.
- Other conditions observed include: developmental delays in children, including lack of enamel production, central and peripheral nervous system nephropathy, thyroid disorders, immune system suppression, diabetes and endometriosis.
How can you be EXPOSED to Dioxins?
- Industrial origins, a byproduct of burning rubbish, Iron and Steel production, chemical industries.
- Burning CHLORINE-based materials such as: Plastics, treated woods, pesticides, automotive parts, bleached paper, fuels and medical wastes.
- Exposure can occur if the human body comes in contact with ashes, gases and smoke, whether inhaled or passively ingested.
- The EPA recommends items containing dioxins and contaminated materials undergo proper incineration and highly recommends against utilizing open-air burn pits as dioxins even in small doses have proven to be highly poisonous.
- EPA states the method in controlling exposures to Dioxins is to require incineration at high temperatures, a minimum of 850°C and 1000°C for larger materials.
- "Smoldering" occurs with any temperature less than approximately 600°C - which releases lethal, semi-formed dioxins into the air.
Dioxins in Animal STUDIES:
- Studies on large rodents showed ALL ORGANS were affected by high dioxin doses, symptoms showing wasting, anorexia and after large doses death occurred within 1-6 weeks.
- Guinea Pig Lethal Dose (1 µg/kg)
- Hamster Lethal Dose (1,000 µg/kg)
- Also noted was various overgrowth and atrophic (wasting) responses in different organs.
- Thymus atrophy common (Lymphoid organ that produces immune T-Cells)
- Severe Liver toxicity and overgrowth
- However, developmental and cancerous affects are only seen in the human population; ex. cleft palate, hydronephrosis, liver cancers, myelomas, leukemias and breast cancers.