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The potential effects of Potassium chlorate on the human body.

  1. Dec 5, 2011 #1
    The potential effects of "Potassium chlorate" on the human body.

    To the many distinguished members of the chemistry field,

    I am a U.S. Army EOD (explosive ordnance disposal) Tech who returned from Afghanistan about 3 months ago. During my deployment I was forced to manually enter an IED (improvised explosive device) which we later determined was filled with Potassium chlorate (KClO3). During the process I inhaled an exorbitant amount of the HME (home made explosive). It took two hours for the first symptoms to show, migraine, uncontrollable shaking, cold sweating, and shortness of breath. I was immediately given large IVs and the doctor called Poison Control and the CDC in Washington DC, who informed him I was the first reported case ever. The primary concern was that the potassium would bind to my red blood cells and keep the cells from being infused with oxygen or so I was told. I am curious from a chemist's view point what effects this may have on me later in life, since no one seems to be curious but me.

    I can for sure tell you that what I was exposed to was not the purest form of Potassium chlorate, god only knows what else the Taliban used in the making of it, I can say that according to Laser chemical analysis (Ahura first defender) it was still classified as Potassium chlorate.

    I appreciate anyone who is willing to help me theorize any future medical issues I may experience.
  2. jcsd
  3. Dec 6, 2011 #2


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    Re: The potential effects of "Potassium chlorate" on the human body.

    You certainly aren't the first reported case for this! The effects of chlorate in your bloodstream lead to the destruction of some RBC's. That could lead to headaches, dizziness, kidney damage (from methemoglobin) and brain damage if you were hypoxic long enough. Sounds like a typical friday night back in college! All kidding aside, if you are concerned about your health, asking a chemist here isn't in your best interests IMO.

    You might be interested in this case.
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