The Greek word arsenikon came to Latin as arsencum, closest etymological antecedent of the term arsenic. This is the name of the chemical element whose atomic number is 33 and its symbol is Ace, characterized by its high level of toxicity.
Arsenic is scarcely present in the bark of our planet. Sometimes it appears in combination with sulfur and in others, in the native state. The idea of arsenic often refers specifically to the arsenic acid, a water-soluble substance that is used to make pesticides.
Various natural and human activities cause arsenic to be released into the environment. The erosion of minerals, volcanic eruptions and various industrial processes cause arsenic to be present in the earth, air and Water.
Compounds of inorganic arsenic are very toxic, while the compounds of organic arsenic they are less harmful. According to specialists, exposure to inorganic arsenic can cause chronic poisoning, skin lesions and Cancer.
There is a technical term to refer to this problem: arsenic poisoning, which can also be called arsenicism or arsenicosis. These are all those alterations that are registered in the Health of a person due to the entry of arsenic into their body. This can take place both through its organic and inorganic compounds.
When water is contaminated with arsenic, people who drink it or who use it to make arsenic food are at risk. Contaminated water can even affect crops.
Chemical elements can be divided into three categories based on their ionization and bonding properties: metals, non-metals and semi-metals. The latter, which is also known by the name of metalloids, belongs arsenic. As it is present in nature, human beings cannot avoid exposing themselves to it, either by breathing, drinking or eating, and even by entering Contact with the ground.
Of course, arsenic comes in several forms, some of which do not have effects serious in our health. Going from the most to the least toxic, the list goes like this: arsine gas (also called arsano), trivalent inorganic compounds, trivalent organic compounds, pentavalent inorganic compounds, pentavalent organic compounds, and elemental arsenic. We note that the classification talks about its Valencia, the number of electrons you need or must deliver for your last energy level to be full.
At the beginning of the 20th century there was a very serious event related to the ingestion of arsenic that has served as a warning since then: as a result of the contamination of a batch of beer, more than six thousand English citizens suffered poisoning which led to seventy-one of them to their deaths. Around a hundred breweries were affected by this oversight.
The problem began when the sulfuric acid that is used for the production of sugar from cane was contaminated with arsenic. The severity of the event would have been less if it had not been a product that is ingested but one that is inhaled or absorbed through the skin. Among the symptoms and signs that those affected presented are the following:
* changes in pigmentation, leading to brown;
* weakness and pain in the muscles;
* lesions in the liver;
* localized edema.
Beyond these issues, arsenic is in fairly widespread use. Appears in the manufacture of semiconductors, in wood preservatives, in the production of pyrotechnics and in the manufacture of glass.
The medicine it also tends to resort to arsenic, although this trend is receding due to collateral effects. Certain types of chemotherapy, for example, develop with arsenic.