Terror in Japan: Mass-Intoxication with the Nerve-Agent Sarin
Yoram Solberg, Orit Nachtomi-Shick, Yehoshua Shemer, Menachem Alcalay
Medical Corps, Israel Defense Forces and Sheba Medical Center, Tel Hashomer
During 1994/5 the Japanese civilian population suffered 2 terror attacks by the organophosphorus nerve-agent sarin. In these 2 episodes it is estimated that more than 6000 people were injured, of whom 19 died. The quick and efficient response of the civilian emergency systems to these unforseen, attacks has to be analyzed by local authorities to determine the best solutions in case of another attack. We summarize the events, and note the emergency system's response, the need for rapid and accurate chemical identification of the toxin, the necessity for decontaminating the casualties and for providing protective gear for rescue units in the contaminated area. We also describe the clinical status of the casualties and outline the mode of therapy applied.