|VX Nerve Agent|
Lethal Nerve Agent (Synonyms: Phosphonothioic acid, VX): VX nerve agent is extremely lethal. It is an oily liquid that is clear, odorless, and tasteless. Death usually occurs within 10-15 minutes after absorption of a fatal dosage. VX nerve agent is one of the most toxic substances ever synthesized. Signs and symptoms of exposure may occur within minutes or hours, depending upon the dose. They include: miosis (constriction of pupils) and visual effects, headaches and pressure sensation, runny nose and nasal congestion, salivation, tightness in the chest, nausea, vomiting, giddiness, anxiety, difficulty in thinking, difficulty sleeping, nightmares, muscle twitches, tremors, weakness, abdominal cramps, diarrhea, involuntary urination and defecation. With severe exposure, symptoms progress to convulsions and respiratory failure. The permissible airborne exposure concentration for VX nerve agent in any 8-hour work shift can be found in Department of the Army Pamphlet 40-8. To date, however, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration has not promulgated a permissible exposure concentration for VX nerve agent.