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Phosgene Exposure: Mechanisms of Injury and Treatment Strategies

Borak, Jonathan MD; Diller, Werner F. Prof Dr med Habil

Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine: February 2001 - Volume 43 - Issue 2 - p 110-119
Original Articles

Phosgene (carbonyl chloride, CAS 75–44–5) is a highly reactive gas of historical interest and current industrial importance. Phosgene has also proved to be a useful model for the study of those biochemical mechanisms that lead to permeability-type pulmonary edema (adult respiratory distress syndrome). In turn, the study of phosgene-induced adult respiratory distress syndrome has provided insights leading to revised treatment strategies for exposure victims. We summarized recent findings on the mechanisms of phosgene-induced pulmonary edema and their implications for victim management. In light of that research, we also provide a comprehensive approach to the management and treatment of phosgene exposure victims.

From Yale University, New Haven, Conn. (Dr Borak); and the University of Duesseldorf, Duesseldorf, Germany (Dr Diller).

Address correspondence to: Jonathan Borak, MD, 234 Church Street (#1100), New Haven, CT 06510; e-mail

Copyright © by American College of Occupational and Environmental Medicine

Copyright © 2001 by the American College of Occupational and Environmental Medicine