In 1936, Germany
first developed Tabun as an insecticide. Dr. Gerhard Schrader first
noticed the effects of nerve agents on humans when he and his lab assistant
began to experience shortness of breath and contraction of the pupils.
Tabun was the first nerve agent discovered. GA is a clear colorless
and tasteless liquid with a slightly fruity odor.
Signs and Symptoms
are: runny nose; tightness of the chest; dimness of vision and pin
pointing of the eye pupils; difficulty in breathing; drooling and excessive
sweating; nausea; vomiting, cramps, and involuntary defecation and
urination; twitching, jerking, and staggering; and headache, confusion,
drowsiness, coma, and convulsions. These symptoms are followed by cessation
of breathing and death. Symptoms appear much more slowly from a skin
dosage than from a respiratory dosage. Although skin absorption great
enough to cause death may occur in 1 to 2 minutes, death may be delayed
for 1 to 2 hours. Respiratory lethal dosages kill in 1 to 10 minutes,
and liquid in the eye kills almost as rapidly.
breath until respiratory protective mask is donned. If severe signs
of agent exposure appear (chest tightens, pupil constriction, in
coordination, etc.), immediately administer, in rapid succession,
all three Nerve Agent Antidote Kit(s), Mark I injectors (or atropine
if directed by a physician). Injections using the Mark I kit injectors
may be repeated at 5 to 20 minute intervals if signs and symptoms
are progressing until three series of injections have been administered.
No more injections will be given unless directed by medical personnel.
In addition, a record will be maintained of all injections given.
If breathing has stopped, give artificial respiration. Mouth-to-mouth
resuscitation should be used when mask-bag or oxygen delivery systems
are not available. Do not use mouth-to-mouth resuscitation when facial
contamination exists. If breathing is difficult, administer oxygen.
Seek medical attention Immediately.
Contact: Immediately flush eyes with water for 10-15
minutes, then don respiratory protective mask. Although miosis
(pinpointing of the pupils) may be an early sign of agent exposure,
an injection will not be administered when miosis is the only
sign present. Instead, the individual will be taken Immediately
to a medical treatment facility for observation.
Contact: Don respiratory protective mask and remove
contaminated clothing. Immediately wash contaminated skin with
copious amounts of soap and water, 10% sodium carbonate solution,
or 5% liquid household bleach. Rinse well with water to remove
excess decontaminant. Administer nerve agent antidote kit, Mark
I, only if local sweating and muscular twitching symptoms are
observed. Seek medical attention Immediately.
not induce vomiting. First symptoms are likely to be gastrointestinal.
Immediately administer Nerve Agent Antidote Kit, Mark I. Seek medical
Above Information Courtesy
of United States Army