Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Chemicals - toxicology

Chemicals can cause harm if they are

* Breathed in (inhaled) - can damage lungs or be enter blood stream via lungs
* Eaten or drunk (ingested) - if present in food/drink or on hands when hands are put in mouth
* Make contact with skin, eyes
* Absorbed through skin - go through to affect internal organs
* Injected into the body - includes accidental puncture wounds with contaminated item

The effects can be

* Local - only affect the part of the body exposed (skin, eyes, mouth, stomach, lungs)
* Systemic - spread through the body (blood, bones, liver, nervous system)
* Cumulative - may not have an effect on first exposure, but repeated exposure causes problems

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