Are You At Risk? Paraquat and How Can it Affect Health

Written By Jeffrey Nadrich
December 02, 2021
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Are You At Risk? Paraquat and How Can it Affect Your Health

Paraquat is an herbicide banned by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) in 1985 after being a carcinogen. In recent years, its use appears to be increasing with estimated use in 2006 of almost 9 million pounds according to the U.S. Geological Survey.

Anyone who has been exposed to Paraquat should be aware of the effects that it could have on their health. Suppose this chemical has poisoned you or someone you know. In that case, you may be eligible for compensation through a product liability lawsuit against the manufacturer or distributor of the poison.

An attorney will review your case and determine whether or not you have grounds to file a claim. We recommend you to work with Paraquat exposure lawyers, and these lawyers will not leave anything uncovered in your paraquat exposure lawsuit case.

What is Paraquat?

Paraquat is a broad-spectrum herbicide used to kill weeds, brush, and grasses. It is very toxic to humans and can cause death if swallowed or inhaled in large doses. It is fast-acting, with effects beginning within 30 minutes of ingestion and death occurring within 2 to 4 hours.

Methylene chloride, also known as dichloromethane, is a common industrial solvent used in producing paint strippers, varnishes, aerosol spray paints, adhesives, and degreasing agents. Even when dried up, it remains on surfaces for long periods, and particles can still be present airborne.

What does Paraquat do?how paraquat can affect health

Paraquat works by killing the tissue of the plants so they cannot grow or survive. When Paraquat is sprayed on weeds, it can be absorbed into the plant material. Humans and animals later eat these plants.

Once ingested, this chemical enters the bloodstream through cells lining the gastrointestinal tract, damaging red blood cells and causing conditions such as vomiting and diarrhea. In short, paraquat exposure affects the ability of the body to function correctly.

How Paraquat can Affect Health: Why is Paraquat so dangerous?

Even small amounts of Paraquat can be very toxic if ingested or inhaled. Paraquat causes lung damage and breathing difficulties and can cause death if high enough exposure and symptoms are not treated immediately. Overexposure to Paraquat can cause damage to vital organs such as the liver, heart, lungs, and kidneys.

If you ever suspect exposure to Paraquat, contact your doctor immediately. The EPA has set a safety limit of 0.1 part per million (ppm) of Paraquat in air, which can be measured using an air monitor device capable of detecting picogram levels of chemicals in the air.

How can it affect your health?

The dangers of Paraquat are that it can be absorbed through the skin and can cause severe lung damage if inhaled, leading to death from respiratory failure. It can also cause eye damage, liver damage, and kidney damage if absorbed as well as anemia, which can affect your blood’s ability to carry oxygen throughout your body.

Depending on how much you are exposed to, signs and symptoms of mild overexposure may include:

  • Eye irritation;
  • Difficulty breathing;
  • Vomiting;
  • Diarrhea.

Overexposure to Paraquat may cause:

  • Respiratory distress;
  • Low blood pressure results in unconsciousness followed by death within one week if medical treatment is not given.

These effects occur mainly when someone swallows or breathes in Paraquat, but it can also cause harm if someone touches their eyes after handling it or gets it on their skin or clothes.

How Paraquat can Affect Health: Long term effect of Paraquat on Your Health

Long-term exposure to pesticides such as Paraquat has been shown to cause Parkinson’s disease, a degenerative neurological disorder that affects muscle control. Parkinson’s disease is usually diagnosed between the ages of 50-65 years old.

Paraquat poisoning will not make you feel sick or show signs immediately after being absorbed into your body tissue. Victims may suffer from symptoms such as shortness of breath and coughing blood up to six months later. Paraquat poisoning can also lead to death if left untreated.

Paraquat and Parkinson’s DiseaseParaquat and Parkinson's Disease

It is estimated that 10 million people worldwide have Parkinson’s disease (PD), and approximately 1 million new cases are diagnosed each year. Parkinson’s disease is a degenerative neurological disorder characterized by bradykinesia, tremor at rest, rigidity, and postural instability. Parkinson’s disease (PD) is the second most common neurodegenerative disorder after Alzheimer’s disease and affects approximately 1% of the population older than 60 years.

The main symptoms of Parkinson’s Disease are movement abnormalities such as tremors, slowness of movement (bradykinesia), muscle rigidity, postural instability, and difficulty with balance. These symptoms are caused by the death of dopamine generating cells in the substantia nigra.

In addition to motor problems, nonmotor symptoms may also be present in PD patients, including sleep disturbance, depression, anxiety disorders, and cognitive decline. Other nonmotor manifestations include autonomic dysfunction, sexual dysfunction, and pain.

How Paraquat can Affect Health: The Link

to cause Parkinson’s disease (PD), according to a case-control study published in the British Medical Journal (BMJ). The study evaluated a group of men over age 50 who were diagnosed with PD and a group of men matched by age who did not have PD. The researchers found that men with PD were more likely than controls to have used Paraquat. Using multiple logistic regression models, they calculated that men who had used Paraquat were 3.7 times more likely to develop PD than those who had not.

If you have been diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease and believe that it can be due to Paraquat,  you may be entitled to compensation for your injuries. Paraquat was a popular pesticide in the 1980s. About 30 million pounds of it were sold annually in the U.S. As it turns out, Paraquat is a toxin linked to Parkinson’s disease and prostate cancer, pulmonary hypertension, and other severe conditions. If you were exposed to the chemical anywhere from two to 40 years ago and began experiencing symptoms soon after, you may have a case.

Contact a paraquat exposure lawyerContact a paraquat exposure lawyer

Paraquat can cause several problems, including non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma, Parkinson’s disease, and lung cancer. Paraquat is a chemical that can be absorbed through the skin and inhaled when sprayed on crops. If you or someone you love has been exposed to Paraquat, you should find out if any legal options may be available to you or your loved one.

A paraquat lawyer can help your case by going over all of the facts and determining if you have a valid claim against any parties who may be responsible for your illness. Paraquat was known to cause harm when ingested or even touched with bare hands. Anyone who worked at jobs where they came into direct contact with the chemical should contact a paraquat attorney as soon as possible regarding their legal rights.


About the Author Jeffrey Nadrich

Jeffrey Nadrich is the founder and managing partner. The firm has now grown to six offices throughout California.  The firm has recovered more than $350 million on its clients. Since 1990, Jeffrey Nadrich has represented injury victims and their families, workers, and consumers who have been seriously injured due to negligence and willful conduct.

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