Agent Orange Symptoms
The Most Common Agent Orange Symptoms
Agent Orange symptoms are many and varied, and range from mild to very severe. Agent Orange is an herbicide. It was developed during World War II, and for a time considered for use in the Pacific theater, but it never was, and the first application of the herbicide was for crop control a few years later.
Although the British used Agent Orange for military purposes a few years after the war ended, the United States continued to use it primarily for agricultural purposes. It was its use in the Vietnam War however, as a means of clearing jungle foliage to open supply lines and deny guerrilla forces shelter, that the chemical became a household word.
The name has nothing to do with the color of the herbicide but refers to the color of the barrels it was shipped in. Although Agent Orange was quite effective in clearing plant growth, many in the area where it was used, soldiers and civilians alike, began to experience Agent Orange symptoms.
It wasn't just in wartime theaters of operations that Agent Orange symptoms manifested themselves. Workers in plants manufacturing the substance often fell victim to the toxin, either due to proximity or because of accidents. By the time the toxin was used in combat areas in Vietnam, agent Orange symptoms were already fairly well known. While many of the symptoms were the result of Agent Orange being contaminated with Dioxin, a powerful toxin, the agent itself was found to be responsible for a wide variety of illnesses and symptoms.
A number of different types of cancer, including cancer if the bronchus, the larynx, and the lung, have been traced to Agent Orange. The most common disease caused by the chemical is chloracne, an acne like eruption, usually occurring on the face and upper body. Liver dysfunctions and birth defects have also been traced to the agent. A number of veterans returning from Vietnam suffered from various personality disorders, some of which were traced directly to Agent Orange.
Skin, Heart, And Mental Symptoms - Agent Orange symptoms crop up in a number of places. Besides the condition known as chloracne, skin rashes also can occur and the skin often becomes much more sensitive to heat and sunlight. In some instances skin discoloration occurs. The hair and nails can be affected as well, with the nails becoming brittle, and hair loss occurring in some instances. The heart can also be impacted with Agent Orange symptoms showing up as deficiencies in the chemistry of the blood and occasional cases of high blood pressure.
It was mentioned that some soldiers returning from Vietnam experience mental disorders of one type or another. Agent Orange symptoms in these cases ranged from increasing irritability or anger, to memory loss and an inability to concentrate, to extreme depression including thoughts of suicide. In some instances, those exposed to Agent Orange were known to become violent at times, requiring psychiatric care.
Metabolic, Neurological, And So On - The list of symptoms doesn't stop there. Some of those exposed to the agent suffered from metabolic disorders, ranging from fatigue to significant and rapid weight loss. A number of neurological symptoms, including dizziness, numbness, drowsiness, headaches, and twitching, were reported in many cases. Gastrointestinal problems and genitourinary problems were also reported, with symptoms including abdominal pain, vomiting of blood and bloody urine, instances of jaundice and hepatitis, gastric ulcers, bladder discomfort, and kidney pain. All in all, this herbicide, while very effective in the destruction of foliage and very useful in certain areas of agriculture, can certainly wreak a fair amount of havoc as far as its effect on humans is concerned.