Monday, January 22, 2007

I just saw something horrible.

I'm watching a show about the 9/11 ground zero clean up. And they just showed a pathology slide of a man who died after participating in the original clean up. It was a high resolution microscopic slide of a lung section. (Why do I call it a lung section? Well, when someone dies in a weird/suspicious way, pathology experts take every organ and make small slices from each of them. Those small slices are called sections.) The slides showed a lung section with almost no air/aveolar interaction, a huge proliferation of mesothelial cells, and pretty much nowhere for gas exchange to occur (yeah, I know, the sentace was redundant... but hey, sometimes redundancy helps get the point across.) To anyone who listened during his or hers pathology lectures, the slides shown are horrifying. How can anyone breathe without the natural mesothelial/endothelial interchange? Yeah, that was my answer too. So the slide clearly showed that something impacted lung structure and physiology in a hugely negative way. Which basically meant that the poor guy couldn't breathe. At all. And the problem was caused by a chemical or particle foreign body.

Reportedly this poor man never smoked. Reportedly he never inspected a building that contained high levels of asbestos. So the absence of normal lung structure is logically explained by... yeah, that's right, Ground Zero.

Why did this man die without any help for his family? That's shameful. These men were heroes. I hope we can somehow elect more responsible people who will spend taxpayer money to help these people. I know for certain that I'd pay that extra tax.

Wouldn't you?

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