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Arsenic Poisoning & Nose Bleeds

Updated April 17, 2017

When ingested, arsenic attaches to human hair, skin and nails. In addition to nose bleeds, this poisonous metal causes damage to the kidneys, liver, lungs and skin. Arsenic causes cancer in humans, and very high concentrations can cause death.

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Exposure to Humans

Inorganic arsenic, found in compounds with other metals, has been found in groundwaters. Humans are mainly exposed to arsenic in food and drinking water.

Potential Causes of Arsenic Poisoning

Arsenic is used to protect wood from decay. It is also used with other chemicals to worm animals and in farming and forestry to kill ants, rats, weeds and termites, based on the World Health Organization (WHO). To prevent arsenic poisoning and its symptoms, people must wear protective clothing and/or use a respirator.

Incidents of Arsenic Exposure

Incident reports filed by the Environmental Protection Agency reveal reports from the National Pesticide Telecommunications Network (NPTN) and state health agencies that men, women and children have suffered from nose bleeds and hair loss after exposure to arsenic. In Illinois, a man and woman constructed picnic tables from arsenic-treated wood and experienced nose bleeds, blackouts, dark urine and aching legs.

Intravenous Arsenic Trioxide

When taken intravenously--in the veins--arsenic trioxide serves as a benefit; however, it also has undesired side effects. Based on MayoClinic.com, a nose bleed is considered a less common side effect, occurring in 10 to 50 per cent of intravenous cases.

Other Symptoms of Arsenic Poisoning

Based on HerbalRemedies.com, convulsions, changes in fingernail pigment, drowsiness, headaches and confusion are other symptoms of arsenic poisoning. The World Health Organization (WHO) states that additional symptoms include a mouth that smells like garlic, low blood pressure and blue skin, sore throat and sudden stomach pain and vomiting, when arsenic is either inhaled, on the skin, in the eyes or consumed in small amounts over a long period of time.

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About the Author

Based in Loganville, Ga., Dora Diamond has been writing articles since 1998. They have appeared in "The Gwinnett Post," "The Loganville Post," and "TAS Journal." Diamond holds a Bachelor of Arts in English and a Master of Arts in instructional design and performance improvement.

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