CBRNE - Vesicants, Organic Arsenicals - L, ED, MD, PD, HL Follow-up

Updated: Apr 29, 2015
  • Author: Geoffrey M Fitzgerald, MD; Chief Editor: Zygmunt F Dembek, PhD, MPH, MS, LHD  more...
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Follow-up

Further Outpatient Care

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  • Patients with only minor skin and eye lesions can be discharged with outpatient follow-up care.
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Further Inpatient Care

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  • Victims of severe toxicity from an organic arsenical may require prolonged care for dermatologic, ophthalmic, and pulmonary sequelae.
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Complications

Severe vapor exposure can lead to permanent damage to the respiratory mucosa. Secondary bacterial pneumonia is most common 3-6 days postexposure.

Victims with severe exposure to an organic arsenical can experience long-term complications in a number of organ systems, including neurologic, endocrine, and thermoregulatory disorders. The exact mechanism of these effects is unknown.

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Prognosis

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  • Prognosis is good in all but the most severe cases.
  • Permanent discoloration can occur at blister sites, especially with phenyldichloroarsine (PD).
  • Patients with mild conjunctival irritation can be expected to fully recover in 1-2 weeks. Patients with moderate conjunctival irritation with mild corneal damage can expect recovery in 4-6 weeks, but severe corneal damage may be irreversible, especially in PD exposure.
  • Victims who suffered mild-to-moderate pulmonary exposure can expect full recovery in 1-4 weeks. Severe vapor exposure can lead to permanent damage to the respiratory mucosa. This can lead to an increased risk of future infection and/or neoplasia.
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