Hong Kong Journal of Emergency Medicine

Volume 9 Number 4, October 2002

An overview of chemical warfare agents

JTS Chan, RSD Yeung, SYH Tang

Chemical warfare agent is defined as a chemical which is intended for use in military operations to kill, seriously injure, or incapacitate humans (or animals) through its toxicological effects. Chemical agents are relatively simple to make and easy to transport. Moreover, their effects are immediate and dramatic. Therefore chemical weapons are commonly used by terrorists to kill or injure in order to achieve certain political purposes. Although chemical incident is uncommon, however, once it occurs, the consequence will be great. Therefore, fundamental knowledge about the basic concepts, toxicity, personal protection, decontamination and treatment with respect to chemical incident are very important. (Hong Kong j.emerg.med. 2002;9:201-205)

Keywords : CWA, decontamination, hazardous material, PPE

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