The worst poisons

The worst poisons

Hi% username%

Yes, I know, the headline is hackneyed and there are over 9000 links in Google describing scary poisons and horror stories.

But I do not want to list the same thing. I do not want to measure doses of LD 50 and claim originality.

I want to write about those poisons with which you,%% username%, have a big risk to face every day. And that are not as simple as their nearest brethren.

Enemy need to know in person. And I hope it will be interesting.

So - my death dozen!

Tenth place


Thallium is a soft, silver-white metal with a bluish tinge. In the photo he is in an ampoule - and this is no accident. 600 mg of thallium reliably dump any healthy person - in this respect, thallium is more abruptly than all of your other heavy metals. At the same time, like all heavy metals, thallium is classified as cumulative poisons - accumulating pathological symptoms in chronic poisoning.

Unlike classical heavy metals, which in essence cling to the cysteine ​​thiol group in proteins and prevent them from living, thallium is more sophisticated: monovalent thallium ions in size and chemical properties coincide with potassium, and therefore replace potassium ions in biochemical processes. Thallium is concentrated in the hair, bones, kidneys and muscles, affecting the peripheral nervous system, gastrointestinal tract and kidneys.

A characteristic symptom of poisoning with thallium compounds is partial hair loss, with a significant dose - total alopecia. With a high dose - alopecia is not typical, as a person dies from poisoning before the onset of hair loss. That is, in principle, if you like to shave well - you can try to play with the dose, but there is a risk not to guess.

In cases of poisoning with thallium or its compounds, Prussian blue is used as an antidote. First aid in the administration of thallium is gastric lavage with a solution of 0.3% sodium thiosulfate with agitated activated carbon powder. It is said to help, but it is inaccurate.

Thallium generally belongs to strategic poisons, so why is it on my list at all? The fact is that most laboratories that analyze water and food use Excellent IV Calibration Solution . I witnessed how this solution was taken with a pipette, and since there was no rubber pear, they pulled the solution with the mouth . Well what can I say ... Not the best way to get a Darwin Award.

Ninth place


Phosgene, which is simple to ugliness, is in fact magnificent: mankind has known it since 1812, but this “light-born” (namely, the name is translated from bourgeois) gas is not good: it causes toxic pulmonary edema, which some good people used unhindered when hounded other good people in the First World War. Contact of phosgene with lung tissue causes impaired alveolar permeability and rapidly progressive pulmonary edema. Good people used it, but to this day the antidote for phosgene has not been invented .

The beauty and simplicity lies in the fact that the first distinct signs of poisoning appear after a latent period of 4 to 8 hours, even periods of 15 hours were observed. After this comes a strong cough, shortness of breath, cyanosis of the face and lips.Progressive pulmonary edema leads to severe suffocation, painful pressure in the chest, breathing rhythm increases, sometimes to 60-70 per minute. Breath convulsive. A little detail: the protein-containing, edematous, frothy and viscous liquid is sprayed from the alveoli and bronchioles of the lungs into the wider respiratory tract, leading to difficulty and impossibility of respiration. What does the unfortunate at this moment and how does he look - do you remember the pictures of horror films? Exactly. In case of toxic pulmonary edema, up to about half of the total blood of the body passes into the lungs, which as a result of this swell and increase in mass. While a normal lung weighs about 500-600 grams, it was possible to observe "phosgene" lungs weighing up to 2.5 kilograms.

In the end, the blood pressure drops sharply, the poisoned one is in a strong state of excitement, breathes with noise, gasps for breath, then death occurs.

There are also cases when a poisoned person avoids any unnecessary movement and chooses some more comfortable position to ease breathing. The lips of these poisoned gray, cold and sticky sweat. Despite the choking, their sputum is not separated. A few days later the poisoned dies. Rarely, in 2–3 days, an improvement may occur, which in 2–3 weeks may result in recovery, but complications are frequent as a result of secondary infectious diseases, which leads to death.
So, how do you feel phosgene and run away if you take into account the long latent period and the fact that this gas has no taste and resembles rotten fruit or hay by smell, is not the sharpest, in contrast to what smells like in the minibus you're driving to? Oddly enough - smoking: smoking in the air containing phosgene is unpleasant or even impossible.
Phosgene is actively used in organic synthesis: in the production of dyes, as well as in the production of polycarbonate thermoplastics. But you,%% username, remember: phosgene is formed when burning chlorine-containing freon. Interestingly, as a result, smoking is forbidden when servicing refrigeration machines and installations. In light of the fact that a smoker is more likely to feel that something is wrong, it’s hard to say which is more important.

Eighth place

Tetraethyl lead

Well, about the toxicity of lead and how it looks, everyone knows. Nevertheless, no one is soared to hold it in their hands, and sometimes there are then sandwiches with these very hands. Nobody is soared to melt the lead pigs and breathe waste. Meanwhile, lead is highly toxic and, like all heavy metals, has an excellent property of accumulating. Lead can accumulate in the bones, causing their gradual destruction, is concentrated in the liver and kidneys. So, by accumulating the coveted dose,%% username%, you will naturally feel a little ill: there will be pain in the abdomen, joints, cramps, fainting. With the continuation it is possible to see the light at the end of the tunnel with all the consequences.

Lead exposure in children is especially dangerous: with prolonged exposure, it causes mental retardation and chronic brain diseases.

By the way, lead acetate is sweet to the taste! You did not know% username%? Yes, yes, because it is called lead sugar. Saltykov-Shchedrin even mentioned it when making fake wines:
A bucket of alcohol is poured into a barrel, and then, depending on the quality of the wine produced: there is so much molasses on Madera, so much tar on malaga, sugar lead on Rhine wine, etc.This mixture is stirred until it becomes homogeneous, and then clogged ...

By the way, it is believed that the Russian word "lead" is associated with the word "wine", the ancient Romans (and in the Caucasus) kept the wine in lead vessels, which gave it a peculiar taste. This taste was valued so highly that they did not pay attention to the possibility of poisoning with poisonous substances. Well, yes, live fast - die young ...

But tetraethyl lead, a colorless oily volatile liquid, which has been used as an anti-knock additive to gasoline for a long time (Leaded Petrol), deserves special attention. In the USSR, a dye was added to automotive gasoline containing tetraethyl lead for labeling: until 1979, AI93, A-76 and A-66 gasolines containing tetraethyl lead were painted blue, green, orange, respectively, and since 1979, leaded gasoline has been painted orange-red ( AI-93), yellow (A-76), blue (AI-98), green (A-66) or pink (A-72) colors.

This was not done at all for beauty and attracting customers - besides the fact that the exhausts polluted everything around with lead, tetraethyl lead itself has a number of pleasant properties, ranging from carcinogenicity and ending with extremely high toxicity. At the same time it is possible to penetrate both with couples (this stuff is volatile, do not forget) and through the skin. This substance selectively affects the nervous system, causing acute, subacute and chronic poisoning (yes, like lead, this thing likes to accumulate).

More often poisoning are acute and subacute. First of all, the cortex of the large brain is affected. In the area of ​​the vegetative centers of the diencephalon, a center of congestive arousal arises, which leads to gross violations of the cortical-subcortical interrelationships.

In the initial stage of acute poisoning, pronounced vegetative disorders are noted: body temperature and blood pressure fall, sleep is disturbed, there is a persistent fear of death at night, anxious, depressed mood. Characterized by the feeling of a tangle of hair or threads on the tongue.

In the pre-inculcation stage, pronounced mental disturbances are manifested: the fear of death begins to disturb not only at night, but also during the day, auditory, visual, tactile hallucinations of frightening character appear, delusions of persecution. Under the influence of delirium develops psychomotor agitation, the patient becomes aggressive, there are cases when, trying to save their lives from people allegedly pursuing them, people were thrown out of the windows.

At the climax, psychomotor excitement reaches its maximum voltage. Consciousness confused. It seems to the unfortunate that it is cut into pieces, that the body is wrapped around snakes, and so on. Epileptic seizures may develop. At the height of psychomotor agitation, the temperature rises (up to 40 ° C), the pressure and rhythm of the heart increase. The final is clear: collapse, death.

If you are lucky, the prognosis is favorable: a vegetative asthenic state comes to replace psychomotor agitation. At the same time, there are mental defects, emotional dullness, reduced intelligence, loss of interest in the environment, etc. - but you will live. Not sure if happy.

By the way, do you remember the stories of grandmothers about terrible substance abusers who sniff gasoline? In-in! According to the influential hypothesis proposed for explaining fluctuations in crime rates in the second half of the 20th and early 21st centuries, poisoning with tetraethyl lead in childhood entailed impairment of the development of the central nervous system, resulting in an increase in delinquent behavior in adulthood, which resulted in growth crime from the 1960s to the early 1990s. The fall in crime rates since the 1990s, according to this hypothesis, is explained by the decrease in consumption of gasoline manufactured using tetraethyl lead since the 1970s.

If, after all, you are unlucky and you are poisoned with tetraethyl lead, then you will be treated like the most ordinary psycho: hypnotics (barbiturates), hexenal, aminazine, drugs (except morphine, which gives a paradoxical effect, increasing agitation). Intravenous glucose with vitamins of group B and ascorbic acid, dehydrating agents (glucose, magnesium sulfate), as well as cardiac and vascular agents (during collapse) are also prescribed. Perhaps they will make you a man back. If you are lucky, that is reasonable.

By the way, tetraethyl lead is prohibited everywhere, yes. In Russia, since November 15, 2002, but sometimes, looking at people around me, I have doubts ...

Seventh place


In general, a mixture of various polychlorinated dibenzodioxin is taken under dioxins. The name comes from the abbreviated name of the tetrachloro derivative - 2,3,7,8-tetrachlorodibenzo [b, e] -1,4-dioxin - this handsome man is represented as a formula, but compounds with other substituents - halides - also refer to dioxins. br/>
All dioxins are cumulative poisons and belong to the group of dangerous xenobiotics - that is, there are no such substances in nature, and their author is man. Dioxins are formed as a by-product in the production of herbicides of the chlorophenol series. And what does a person do with all by-products? That's right!

Dioxins are also formed as undesirable impurities as a result of various chemical reactions at high temperatures and in the presence of chlorine. The main reasons for the emission of dioxins into the biosphere, above all, the use of high-temperature technologies for the chlorination and processing of organochlorine substances and, especially, the burning of waste products. The presence of ubiquitous polyvinyl chloride and other polymers in various debris, various chlorine compounds promotes the formation of dioxins in flue gases. Another source of danger is the pulp and paper industry. Bleaching of cellulose pulp with chlorine is accompanied by the formation of dioxins and a number of other dangerous organochlorine substances.

The first acquaintance of grateful humanity with dioxins occurred during the war in Vietnam from 1961 to 1971 in the framework of the program for the destruction of vegetation "Ranch Hand". Then Agent Orange was used as a defoliant, a mixture of 2,4-dichlorophenoxyacetic acid (2,4-D) and 2,4,5-trichlorophenoxyacetic acid (2,4,5-T) containing impurities of polychlorobenzodioxins. As a result, a significant number of both Vietnamese and soldiers who were in contact with Agent Orange suffered from exposure to dioxins. Nobody thought about the Vietnamese then, and the soldiers - well, after all, they are soldiers, right?

The acquaintance took place closer on July 11, 1976 in the Italian city of Seveso, when an explosion at a chemical plant of the Swiss company ICMESA led to the release of a cloud of dioxin into the atmosphere. The cloud hung over the industrial suburbs, and then the poison began to settle on houses and gardens. Thousands of people began having nausea, weakened their eyesight, developed eye disease, in which the outlines of objects seemed vague and unsteady. The tragic consequences of the incident began to manifest themselves in 3-4 days. By July 14, Seveso outpatient clinics were overwhelmed with sick people. Among them were many children suffering from rashes and festering boils. They complained of backache, weakness, and dull headaches. Patients told doctors that animals and birds in their backyards and gardens began to die suddenly. For several years after the accident, a sharp increase in congenital anomalies in newborns, including spina bifida (spina bifida, open spinal cord), was observed in the areas around the factory. The show is not for the faint of heart, to be honest.

By the way, they say that the extraordinary increase in the liking of the former President of Ukraine Viktor Yushchenko is also associated with dioxins. However, maybe not. No one, including Viktor Yushchenko himself, knows.

The reason for the toxicity of dioxins lies in the ability of these substances to accurately fit into the receptors of living organisms and suppress or alter their vital functions. Dioxins, suppressing the immune system and intensively influencing the processes of cell division and specialization, provoke the development of oncological diseases. Dioxins intrude into the complex and well-functioning work of the endocrine glands. They interfere with the reproductive function, sharply slowing puberty and often leading to female and male infertility. They cause deep violations in almost all metabolic processes, suppress and break down the work of the immune system, leading to the state of the so-called "chemical AIDS".

Recent studies have confirmed that dioxins cause deformities and problematic development in children.

Dioxins penetrate the human body in several ways: 90 percent - with water and food through the gastrointestinal tract, the remaining 10 percent - with air and dust through the lungs and skin. These substances circulate in the blood, deposited in adipose tissue and lipids of all body cells without exception. Through the placenta and with breast milk, they are transmitted to the fetus and baby.

Here is another set of some skills that strengthen this hero:

  • Virtually insoluble in water.
  • Dioxins are not affected by heat treatment at 900 ° C.
  • Their half-life in the environment is about 10 years.
  • Once in the human or animal body, they accumulate in adipose tissue and very slowly decompose and are removed from the body (the half-life in the human body is between 7 and 11 years).
  • LD 50 - 70 µg/kg for monkeys, orally. This is lower than that of most military toxic agents. Well, we are descended from monkeys, is not it?
  • In view of the extremely high toxicity, chromatography-mass spectrometry and bioassay analysis (CALUX) are used to determine dioxins in the environment and, in particular, in water. These are very expensive methods and not every laboratory is equipped with them, especially in this country.
  • At the moment, there are no ways to completely remove dioxins from the body, nor effective antidotes.

In general,% username%, as you could guess, it is better to guess yourself, than the person himself, no one can. Currently, there is a search for genetic modification of some species of bacteria in order to improve their ability to absorb dioxins. But given how everyone is afraid of GMOs, and how well mankind is coping with self-felting - I'm afraid that these certain types of bacteria will only make things worse.

We'll see.

Fortunately, there are still not so many dioxins around, bacteria are only in development, and therefore only in seventh place, but with a serious basis for the future.

Sixth place

Botulinum toxin

Protein neurotoxin of complex nature, produced by bacteria Clostridium botulinum. The strongest of the known neurotoxins is a half-lethal dose of the order of 0.000001 mg/kg of your frail body.

By the way, botulinum toxin is one of the most complex proteins synthesized in nature. It works exquisitely: the molecule is a two-domain globule. Domains A and B are linear polypeptides linked by a single cystine bridge. Domain B is responsible for the transportation of the toxin in the body, the reception on the presynaptic neuron membrane and the restructuring of the near-receptor portion of this membrane with the formation of a transmembrane channel in it.Next, the disulfide bond is restored, domain A is released and penetrates through this channel into the cytoplasm of the nerve cell, where it prevents the release of a mediator, acetylcholine. Very similar to the effect of organophosphate such as sarin, soman and VX - but much more efficient. Did I mention that Mother Nature is more inventive than man?

What will you feel when this peak of natural synthesis gets into your stomach? Well, firstly - there is always a hidden period, sometimes up to 2-3 days. Then suddenly it will not be good for you: the poison causes disturbances in the functioning of the cranial nerves, skeletal muscles, and nerve centers of the heart. Pupils dilate, fog appears before your eyes, flies, many of them have squint (and not at all because you drank too much at a party). Later, speech and swallowing disorder, masked face, join. Death occurs from hypoxia caused by impaired metabolic processes of oxygen, asphyxiation of the respiratory tract, paralysis of the respiratory muscles and cardiac muscle. In short - you will die, and quite painfully. If you’re lucky, you’ll confine yourself to facial paralysis and strabismus, which, if passed, is not very soon. Lucky not everyone.

Why only sixth place? The fact is that botulinum clostridia are the only ones that do not disclose the secret of the master of production of this toxin - they do not like to work outdoors, and therefore you can find them mainly in canned food and sausage - especially in canned fried mushrooms and harvested in large pieces of meat and fish with damage to the surface. The second place is medicine: it is Botox, Relatox, Xeomin, BTXA, Dysport, Neuronox. So, if you are overpowered with something similar, there is every chance to feel the indescribable complex of all the benefits described above. Sorry, then there will be no one to tell.

By the way, humans are very humane, and therefore in the USA, Great Britain and Canada, botulinum toxin was considered as a fighting agent of chemical action already in the 60s-70s of the last century. In total, since 1975, botulinum toxin A was adopted by the US Army under the code XR. A stock of toxin was stored in the Pine Bluff arsenal in Arkansas. Perhaps it is stored now, and maybe not only there. Taking into account the fact that XR is the most toxic of all known deadly substances of natural and synthetic origin, according to the results of tests (I wonder who?), I’m not so much afraid of a nuclear winter.

How to escape? Do not eat anything. And if they eat something after heat treatment: botulinum toxin does not like it when it is fried or boiled. Despite the fact that this substance is not afraid of gastric juice, it is completely destroyed by boiling for 25-30 minutes.

By the way, the warriors have discovered that there is a vaccine against botulinum toxin! Yes, yes, just like measles. But do not rush to flee to the pharmacy - the vaccine is not available to the masses, and besides, the same warriors have found that 10% -30% of people are unable to immunize, and the rest of the immunity occurs only after a month or more. By the way, in quantities of 1000-10000 toxic doses (and this is a bit - only 0.057-0.57 mg/kg if in the mouth), botulinum toxin spits on these vaccines of yours and cuts to death.

Fifth place


In fact, this is a group of poisons, it all depends on what you attach to the place R 1 .. R 5 . By nature, these are cyclic octapeptides consisting of eight amino acid residues. They are found in the fruit bodies of the fungi of the genus Amanita, Galerina and Lepiota - yes, a pale grebe is from here.

Amatoxins are one of the most powerful hepatotoxins in the world. So no matter how much you swallow,% username%, it doesn’t compare with this charm: amatoxins reliably block RNA polymerase II, which blocks the synthesis of messenger RNA and causes necrosis of hepatocytes. And since it is impossible to survive in our world without a liver - in general, you understand.

A particularly pleasant nuance of this rubbish is a long latent period: 6-30 hours. That is, you do not reliably have time to come round and wash the stomach. Symptoms occur suddenly: severe vomiting (persistent), abdominal pain, diarrhea. In the products of diarrhea (well, you understand) blood is observed, since intestinal enterocytes are destroyed. What happens to the liver at this moment ... I really don't even want to think. Growing weakness, violations of water and electrolyte balance. On the 2nd - 3rd day, signs of toxic hepatopathy develop: the liver increases, the mood worsens, jaundice appears and hemorrhagic diathesis appears - this is when you are sprinkled with a bloody rash. Nephropathy, hepatic-renal failure, hepatargy, anuria, coma develops. It's all sad. It is extremely difficult poisoning occur in children, it is especially dangerous if a large amount of toxins (more than 200 mg) has entered the body: in this case, the development of intoxication occurs with lightning speed, with the development of acute atrophy of the liver and rapid death.
The main cause of death is acute hepatic failure, less often acute hepatic-renal failure. Even if you survive, you will most likely get irreversible changes in the structure of the liver tissue, expressed by total necrosis.

How to escape from this? Unfortunately, amatoxins are more resistant to heat than botulinum toxins. In any case, do not act like a mushroom picker, and if you went to the forest, find a better job for yourself! Do not buy mushrooms from grandmothers, even if they look very cute! Remember about Snow White - and you have no dwarfs, no familiar princes!

It is not strange, when intoxication helps high doses of penicillin. Silibinin (silibin) is said to be essentially a concentrate of milk thistle seed - an antidote to amatoxins, but this is not accurate. Many offer to take part in tests, but for some reason no one agrees.

Fourth place


Aflatoxins are a group of polyketides produced by microscopic fungi (micromycetes) of several species of the genus Aspergillus (mainly A. flavus and A. parasiticus). These babies grow on grains, seeds and fruits of plants with a high oil content - for example, on peanut seeds. Aflatoxins with time and with improper storage are formed in the stale collection of tea and other herbs. The toxin is also found in the milk of animals that consumed contaminated feed.

Of the biologically produced poisons, aflatoxins are the strongest hepatocarcinogens found to date. When a high dose of poison is ingested, death occurs within a few days due to irreversible damage to the liver. When a low dose is ingested, chronic aflatoxosis develops, which is characterized by suppression of the immune system, DNA damage, activation of oncogenes - eventually liver cancer. Yes,% username%, having eaten not very good peanuts or sunflower seeds - you will die. Maybe not immediately, but guaranteed and painful.

Aflatoxins are resistant to product heat treatment - so roasted peanuts also apply.

In developed countries, strict monitoring of products is carried out, where aflatoxins (peanuts, corn, pumpkin seed, etc.) are most often found, and infected batches are destroyed. For developing countries, where such control is absent, contamination of products with mold fungi remains a serious mortality factor. For example, in Mozambique, mortality from liver cancer is 50 times higher than in France.

What country do you belong to,% username%?

Raise the stakes! Third place


  and especially


Everyone knows about the harm of mercury. You shouldn’t break thermometers and play with beautiful magic balls - I hope so too.

Mercury and all its compounds are poisonous. Exposure to mercury - even in small quantities - can cause serious health problems and is a threat to fetal development and the development of a child in the early stages of life. Mercury can have a toxic effect on the nervous, digestive and immune systems, as well as on the lungs, kidneys, skin and eyes. WHO views mercury as one of ten major chemicals or groups of chemicals that represent a significant public health problem.

But in fact it is now. Up until the 1970s, the very same physicians were very active in using mercury compounds:

  • mercury (I) chloride (calomel) - laxative;
  • mercuzale and promeran - strong diuretics;
  • mercury (II) chloride, mercury (II) cyanide, mercury amide chloride and yellow mercury (II) oxide - antiseptics (including as part of ointments).

There are cases when a patient was poured a glass of mercury into the stomach when the intestines twisted. According to the ancient healers who offered such a method of treatment, due to its gravity and mobility, mercury had to pass through the intestines and, under its weight, straighten its twisted parts.

Mercury preparations have been used since the 16th century. (in the USSR until 1963) for the treatment of syphilis. This was due to the fact that the pale treponema that causes syphilis is highly sensitive to organic and inorganic compounds that block the sulfhydryl groups of the microbial thiol enzymes - mercury, arsenic, bismuth, and iodine. However, such treatment was not effective enough and very toxic for the patient, who also has sulfhydryl groups, albeit larger than the unfortunate treponema. This treatment led to complete hair loss and a high risk of serious complications. Nevertheless, good, humane doctors went even further: they applied methods of general mercuryization of the body, in which the patient was placed in a heated container, where mercury vapor was fed. Although this technique was relatively effective, the side effects and the risk of fatal mercury poisoning led to its gradual expulsion from clinical practice.

By the way, silver amalgam was used in dentistry as a material for dental fillings until light-cured materials appeared. Remember this every time when a cute aunt-dentist with glasses leans over you!

The most toxic fumes are soluble mercury compounds. Metallic mercury itself is less dangerous, but it gradually evaporates even at room temperature, and fumes can cause severe poisoning - and by the way, fumes do not smell. Mercury and its compounds (mercuric chloride, calomel, cinnabar, mercury cyanide) affect the nervous system, liver, kidneys, gastrointestinal tract, and inhalation affects the respiratory tract. Mercury is a typical representative of cumulative poisons.

Organic mercury compounds stand out slightly, in particular methyl mercury. It is formed, as a rule, as a result of the metabolism of benthic microorganisms when mercury is released into water bodies. The substance is very poisonous. Toxicity is greater than that of mercury, due to more active interaction with sulfhydryl groups of enzymes and, therefore, inactivation of these enzymes. Since the substance is a covalent compound and less polar than the cation itself of mercury, the effect on the body is similar to poisoning by heavy metals (in particular, mercury), but has a feature: the nervous system is more pronounced. This lesion is known as Minamata disease.

For the first time, this syndrome was registered and studied in Japan, in Kumamoto Prefecture in the city of Minamata in 1956. The cause of the disease was the prolonged release by Chisso of inorganic mercury into the water of Minamata Bay, which was converted by the microorganisms to methylmercury in its metabolism, and since this compound tends to accumulate in the organisms, as a result, the concentration in the tissues of the organisms increases with their position in the food chain . Thus, in the fish in Minamata Bay, the content of methylmercury ranged from 8 to 36 mg/kg, in oysters to 85 mg/kg, while in the water it contained no more than 0.68 mg/l.

Symptoms include impaired motility, burning sensation, tingling and goosebumps in the extremities, worsening of speech intelligibility, fatigue, tinnitus, narrowing of the visual field, hearing loss and clumsy movements. Some of the severe victims of Minamata disease went insane, lost consciousness and died within a month after the onset of the disease.

There are also victims with chronic symptoms of Minamata disease, such as headaches, frequent fatigue, loss of smell and taste, and forgetfulness, which are unobtrusive but extremely difficult for everyday life. In addition, there are patients with congenital Minamata disease who were born with pathology as a result of exposure to methylmercury while they were still in the womb of their mothers who ate infected fish.

Minamata disease has not yet come up with a remedy, so treatment consists in trying to alleviate the symptoms and in applying physical rehabilitation therapy. In addition to the physical harm caused to health, there is also a social harm that is to discriminate against the victims of Minamata disease. Well,%% username, do you still want to move to Fukushima, Minamata and the Rising Sun?

By the way, in 1996, the Minamata Disease Museum was built in the town of Meisei, located near the bay. In 2006, a memorial was built in the museum in memory of the victims of mercury poisoning as a result of pollution of Minamata Bay. They say that the victims of this did not feel better.

By the way, there is one more thing -


Well, this is already quite a game, which is so toxic that it is practically never used anywhere and is not met. Colorless liquid is one of the strongest neurotoxins. It is alleged that it has a slightly sweet smell, but science is unknown to people who would check it and managed to communicate their feelings. Although due to its relative stability, dimethyl mercury turned out to be one of the first discovered organometallic compounds. Well, people love to discover what they mow quickly, then Oppenheimer approves.

To you,% username%, guaranteed to send to another world. enough of 0.05-0.1 ml of this thing. The risk is even greater due to the high vapor pressure of this liquid. By the way, dimethylmercury quickly (in seconds) penetrates through latex, PVC, polyisobutylene and neoprene, and is absorbed through the skin. Thus, most standard laboratory gloves are not reliable protection, and the only way to escape to safely handle dimethyl mercury is to use high-security laminated gloves under the second, elbow-reaching neoprene gloves or other thick protective gloves. It is also noted that it is necessary to wear a long face shield and work under an exhaust hood. Do you still want to get to know this sweet smell?

The toxicity of dimethyl mercury was once again underlined by the death of the inorganic chemist Karen Wetterhahn, who followed a few months after she shed a few drops of the compound on her arm wearing a latex glove.

Dimethylmercury easily crosses the blood-brain barrier, probably due to the formation of a complex compound with cysteine. It is very slowly excreted from the body, and thus tends to bioaccumulate. Symptoms of poisoning can manifest months later, often too late for effective treatment. That's it.

The only thing that saves the world is that dimethyl mercury has practically no use (although there’s a certain Alexander Litvinenko trying to say something). It is extremely rarely used when calibrating NMR spectrographs to detect mercury, although even here people who at least understand something usually prefer less toxic salts of mercury for this purpose.

Second Place


Everyone knows about methanol. But in my opinion it is underestimated.

The problem of methanol is not really his problem, but the problem of our body. After all, it contains the enzyme alcohol dehydrogenase (or ADH I), which Mother Nature has awarded us for splitting alcohols. And if, in the case of ordinary ethanol, it breaks it down to acetaldehyde (hello, hangover!), And if you're lucky, to a harmless and nutritive acetic acid in the form of acetyl-coenzyme A, then there was a crap with methanol: toxic formaldehyde and formate . Apparently, Mother Nature has a very specific sense of humor.

The problem is aggravated by the fact that, as daredevils say (there are few of them), methanol is no different in taste and smell from ordinary alcohol, and mixed with it - even more so. By the way, the iodoform reaction, when yellow iodoform is precipitated with ethyl alcohol and nothing falls out with methanol, does not work to determine the content of methanol in ethanol solution.

1-2 milliliters of methanol per kilogram of carcass is usually guaranteed to send brave souls to other interesting people with wings behind their backs, and in view of the particular susceptibility of this substance to the optic nerve - 10-20 ml makes a person blind. Forever.

Fortunately, the toxic effect of methanol develops over several hours, and effective antidotes can reduce the harm done. Therefore, if you,% username%, after abuse for some reason, feel a headache, general weakness, malaise, chills, nausea and vomiting - drink more. I am not joking: as indicated in the guide for the emergency medical doctor, in case of methanol poisoning, the antidote is ethanol, which is administered intravenously in the form of a 10% solution by drip or 30–40% solution orally at the rate of 1-2 grams of solution per 1 kg of body weight per day . The beneficial effect in this case is provided by the distraction of the enzyme ADH I to the oxidation of exogenous ethanol. It should be noted that with insufficiently accurate diagnosis for methanol poisoning, simple alcohol intoxication can be accepted (as you noted above) or poisoning with 1,2-dichloroethane or carbon tetrachloride (organic solvents, which are still a gift, but not so bright) - In this case, the introduction of an additional amount of ethyl alcohol is dangerous. In general, you are not lucky,% username%. Be strong.

Methanol poisonings are quite frequent. So, in the United States during 2013, 1747 cases were recorded (and yes, the United States). There are many mass poisoning with methanol:

  • Mass poisoning with methanol in Spain in early 1963; the official death toll is 51 people, however there are estimates ranging from 1,000 to 5,000 people.
  • Mass methanol poisoning in Bangalore (India) in July 1981. The death toll - 308 people.
  • Mass poisoning with methanol in Italy in spring 1986; 23 people died.
  • Mass methanol poisoning in El Salvador in October 2000 caused the death of 122 people.Authorities suspected the attack, because alcohol was not detected in the alcohol producing plants during the investigation of the incident.
  • Mass poisoning with methanol on September 9–10, 2001 in the city of Pärnu (Estonia); 68 people died.
  • Mass poisoning with methanol in the Czech Republic, Poland and Slovakia in September 2012; 51 people died.
  • Mass methanol poisoning December 17-20, 2016 in Irkutsk (Russia). The death toll is 78 people.

For this reason, methanol and ranked second in our ranking. And this is not funny at all.

Ta-dam! Fanfare! We have the first place!

In the first place we will not have some terribly toxic substance that can be found somewhere in some tropical animals or fish. So what about tetrodotoxin and batrachotoxin forget.

It will not be some kind of inorganic, which can be found only in special industries - such as beryllium nitrate, which, by the way, also tastes sweet, or arsenic chloride, so beloved in the Middle Ages.

It will not be some kind of organic matter that cannot be found during the day either - like ricin, or which has been studied long ago and is in the first-aid kit - like strychnine or digitoxin.

It will not be a beaten cyanide and hydrocyanic acid, with which epic fail happened in the case of Rasputin.

It will not be Polonium-210 or VX, which is guaranteed to be sent to the next world even in miniature doses - but is not at all available to the general public.

No, we’ll have a real killer leader with millions of lives on his account.

Carbon Monoxide

In fact, it was carbon monoxide that sent a bunch of people to the world. This colorless, odorless and tasteless gas enters the atmospheric air during all types of combustion. Carbon monoxide actively binds to hemoglobin, forming carboxyhemoglobin, and blocks the transfer of oxygen to tissue cells, which leads to hypoxia of the hemic type. Carbon monoxide is also included in oxidative reactions, disrupting the biochemical balance in the tissues. In this, its action is very similar to cyanide.

Poisoning is possible:

  • in case of fires;
  • in production where carbon monoxide is used to synthesize a number of organic substances (acetone, methyl alcohol, phenol, etc.);
  • in gasified rooms where gas-using equipment is used (stoves, instantaneous water heaters, heat generators with an open combustion chamber) in conditions of insufficient air exchange, for example, if there is a violation of thrust in chimneys and/or ventilation ducts or lack of supply air for gas combustion;
  • in garages with poor ventilation, in other unventilated or poorly ventilated rooms, tunnels, since the exhaust of a car contains up to 1-3% CO according to standards;
  • with a long stay on a busy road or close to it - on major highways, the average concentration of CO exceeds the poisoning threshold;
  • at home with leakage of luminous gas and with untimely closed oven dampers in rooms with stove heating (home, bath);
  • when using poor-quality air in breathing apparatus;
  • when smoking a hookah (yes, a very large percentage of people experience headaches, dizziness, nausea, drowsiness after smoking the hookah, which is caused by carbon monoxide poisoning formed when there is a lack of oxygen in the hookah).

So there are plenty of chances to get acquainted with your poisoning,% username%.

When the content of 0.08% CO in inhaled air, a person feels a headache and suffocation. With an increase in CO concentration to 0.32%, paralysis and loss of consciousness occur (death occurs after 30 minutes).At a concentration above 1.2%, the consciousness is lost after two or three breaths, the person dies in less than 3 minutes in convulsions. With dotoxic concentrations (less than 0.08%), the following charms can be caught (as the concentration increases):

  1. Decreased speed of psychomotor reactions, sometimes - a compensatory increase in blood flow to vital organs. In persons with severe cardiovascular insufficiency - chest pain during exercise, shortness of breath.
  2. Minor headache, decreased mental and physical performance, shortness of breath with moderate physical exertion. Violations of visual perception. It can be fatal to the fetus, those with severe heart failure.
  3. Throbbing headache, dizziness, irritability, emotional instability, memory disorder, nausea, poor coordination of small arm movements.
  4. Severe headache, weakness, runny nose, nausea, vomiting, blurred vision, confusion.
  5. Hallucinations, a severe violation of the coordination of muscle movement - for this reason, people often died in a fire.

How to help with carbon monoxide poisoning? Well, firstly - leave the zone of infection. By the way, the usual gas mask, wet rags on the face and cotton-gauze dressings do not save, carbon monoxide saw them all in an interesting place and quietly passes through them - you need a gas mask with a hoppalit cartridge - this is one that with copper oxide oxidizes carbon monoxide to a safe carbon dioxide. And then - breathe, breathe! Breathe fresh air, and better oxygen, give your unhappy tissues and organs so much needed!

World medicine does not know reliable antidotes for use in case of carbon monoxide poisoning. But! - be proud: Russian scientists have developed an innovative drug "Arizol", positioned as an antidote (although for some reason other scientists believe in this a little). Introduced intramuscularly, in the form of a solution. Also offered as a prophylactic. Russian scientists are inviting you to test this drug, but for some reason, there are still less willing people than in the case of the adotoxin antidote.

That's all,% username%!

I hope I didn’t spoil your appetite, it was interesting, and you learned something new for yourself, and not just limited your diet and places of visit.

Health and good luck!

“Everything is poison, and nothing is poisonous; only one dose makes the poison invisible "

- Paracelsus

Source text: The worst poisons