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Radiation Toxicity

Other than the damage to DNA, exposure to large amounts of radiation can also cause other serious harms. Radiation poisoning, also known as acute radiation syndrome (ARS) is a disease caused by exposure to high amounts of ionizing radiation. The first symptoms of this syndrome can be nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea. The person usually feels healthy for a short time and becomes seriously ill afterwards. There can also be skin damage and hair loss. Most people who do not recover from ARS will die within several months of exposure. Destruction to a person’s bone marrow that results in various infections and internal bleeding is usually the cause of death. Nuclear reactor accidents that release high amounts of ionizing radiation cause ARS.