The 10 most powerful poisons

The 10 most powerful poisons

Categories: Health and Medicine | Science | World

There are many poisons of very different nature in the world. Some of them act almost instantly, others can torment the victim of poisoning for years, slowly destroying her from the inside. However, the concept of poison has no clear boundaries. It all depends on concentration. And often the same substance can act both as a deadly poison and as one of the most necessary components for maintaining life. A striking example of such duality are vitamins — even a small excess of their concentration can completely destroy health or kill on the spot.

Here we offer a look at 10 substances that belong to pure poisons, and are included in the group of the most dangerous and fast-acting.

The 10 most powerful poisons

The 10 most powerful poisons Cyanides are a fairly large group of salts of prussic acid. They are all, like the acid itself, extremely poisonous. In the last century, both prussic acid and chlorocyanin were used as chemical warfare agents, and tens of thousands of lives were on their account.

Potassium cyanide is also famous for its extreme toxicity. Only 200-300 mg of this white powder, resembling granulated sugar in appearance, is enough to kill an adult literally within a few seconds. Thanks to such a small dosage and incredibly quick death, this poison was chosen to pass away by Adolf Hitler, Joseph Goebbels, Hermann Goering and other Nazis.

They tried to poison Grigory Rasputin with this poison. However, the poisoners mixed cyanide in sweet wine and cakes, not knowing that sugar is one of the most powerful antidotes for this poison. So, in the end, they had to use a gun.

The 10 most powerful poisons

Anthrax is a very serious, rapidly developing disease caused by Bacillus anthracis bacteria. There are several forms of anthrax. The most "harmless" is the skin. Even in the absence of treatment, mortality from this form does not exceed 20%. The intestinal form kills about half of the sick, but the pulmonary form is almost certain death. Even with the help of the latest treatment methods, modern doctors manage to save no more than 5% of patients.

The 10 most powerful poisons

Sarin was created by German scientists trying to synthesize a powerful pesticide. But this deadly poison, which causes a quick but very painful death, acquired its dark fame not in agricultural fields, but as a chemical weapon. Sarin has been produced by tons for military purposes for decades, and only in 1993 its production was banned. But, despite calls for the complete destruction of all stocks of this substance, and in our time it is used by both terrorists and the military.

The 10 most powerful poisons

Amatoxins are a whole group of poisons of a protein nature contained in poisonous mushrooms of the Amanite family, including the deadly pale toadstool. The special danger of these poisons lies in their "slowness". Getting into the human body, they immediately begin their destructive activity, but the victim begins to feel the first malaise no earlier than 10 hours, and sometimes even after a few days, when it is already very difficult for doctors to do anything. Even if such a patient can be saved, he will still suffer from excruciating disorders of the liver, kidneys and lungs for the rest of his life.

The 10 most powerful poisons

Strychnine is found in large quantities in the nuts of the tropical chilibuha tree. It was from them that it was obtained in 1818 by the French chemists Pelletier and Cavant. In small doses, strychnine can be used as a medicine that increases metabolic processes, improves the activity of the heart and the treatment of paralysis. It was even actively used as an antidote for barbiturate poisoning.

Nevertheless, it is one of the most powerful poisons. Its lethal dose is even less than that of the famous potassium cyanide, but it acts much slower. Death from strychnine poisoning occurs after about half an hour of terrible torment and severe convulsions.

The 10 most powerful poisons

Mercury is extremely dangerous in all its manifestations, but its vapors and soluble compounds cause especially strong harm. Even small amounts of mercury that enter the body cause severe damage to the nervous system, liver, kidneys and the entire gastrointestinal tract.

When small amounts of mercury enter the body, the poisoning process proceeds gradually, but inevitably, since this poison is not excreted, but, on the contrary, accumulates. In ancient times, mercury was very widely used for the production of mirrors, as well as felt for hats. Chronic mercury vapor poisoning, expressed in a behavior disorder up to complete insanity, at that time was called "old hatter's disease".

The 10 most powerful poisons

This extremely strong poison is found in the liver, milk and caviar of the famous puffer fish, as well as in the skin and caviar of some species of tropical frogs, octopuses, crabs and in the caviar of the California newt. Europeans first got acquainted with the effects of this poison in 1774, when the crew ate an unknown tropical fish on the ship of James Cook, and the slops from dinner were given to the ship's pigs. By morning, all the people were seriously ill, and the pigs died.

Tetrodotoxin poisoning is very severe, and even today doctors manage to save less than half of all those poisoned.

It is interesting to note that the famous Japanese delicacy puffer fish is prepared from fish in which the content of the most dangerous toxin exceeds lethal doses for humans. Lovers of this treat literally entrust their lives to the art of the cook. But, no matter how hard the chefs try, accidents cannot be avoided, and every year several gourmets die after eating an exquisite dish.

The 10 most powerful poisons

Ricin is an extremely strong poison of plant origin. A great danger is the inhalation of its smallest grains. Ricin is about 6 times more powerful poison than potassium cyanide, but it was not used as a weapon of mass destruction due to purely technical difficulties. But various special services and terrorists really "love" this substance.

Politicians and public figures receive letters filled with ricin with enviable regularity. However, it rarely comes to a fatal outcome, since the penetration of ricin through the lungs has a rather low efficiency. For an absolute result, it is necessary to inject ricin directly into the blood.

The 10 most powerful poisons

VX, or, as it is also called, VI-gas, belongs to the category of chemical warfare gases that have a nerve effect. It was also born as a new pesticide, but soon the military began to use it for their own purposes. Symptoms of poisoning with this gas appear within one minute after inhaling it or getting on the skin, and death occurs after 10-15 minutes.

The 10 most powerful poisons

Botulinum toxin is produced by Clostridium botulinum bacteria, which are the causative agents of the most dangerous disease — botulism. It is the strongest poison of organic nature and one of the strongest poisons in the world. In the last century, botulinum toxin was included in the arsenals of chemical weapons, but at the same time, active research was conducted concerning its use in medicine.

And today, a huge number of people who want to restore the smoothness of the skin, at least for a while, are experiencing the influence of this terrible poison, which is part of the most popular drug "Botox", which once again confirms the validity of the famous statement of the great Paracelsus: "Everything is poison, everything is medicine; both are determined by the dose."

Keywords: Substance | Ten | Poison

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