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This photograph was taken during an investigation that took place in Clovis, New Mexico, in Curry County, dealing with a number of cases involving human and porcine methylmercury poisoning. Here, a number of penned hogs, were being observed for signs of possible mercury contamination. Hogs, which may, or may not have been these in particular, were fed grains treated with methylmercury dicyanamide (a fungicide), and were later butchered, and their meat fed to a hog owners’ family members. Those fed the meat, began to exhibit symptoms indicative of mercury poisoning, which included “ataxia, decreased vision, and depression of consciousness, which progressed to coma over a period of 3 weeks”. Urine specimens from family members, the pork, and the grain seed, all showed results indicative of abnormally high levels of mercury, confirming the diagnosis of organic mercury poisoning.
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CDC/ Dr. William Likosky
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Chemicals and Drugs
Nervous System Diseases
Heavy Metal Poisoning, Nervous System
Mercury Poisoning, Nervous System
Southwestern United States
- This image is in the public domain and thus free of any copyright restrictions.
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