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Fallout From ‘Nuclear Button’ Tweets: Bounce In Income Of Radiation Drug

Enlarge this imagePharmacist Donna Barsky steps pota sium iodide with the Texas Star Pharmacy in 2011 in Plano, Texas.Richard Matthews/APhide captiontoggle captionRichard Matthews/APPharmacist Donna Barsky actions pota sium iodide for the Texas Star Pharmacy in 2011 in Plano, Texas.Richard Matthews/APA Twitter struggle over the size of each “nuclear button” po se sed by President Trump and North Korea’s Kim Jong Un has activated a surge in income of a drug that guards towards radiation poisoning. Troy Jones, who runs the web site, reported desire for pota sium iodide soared very last 7 days, after Trump tweeted that he experienced a “much bigger & more powerful” button than Kim a statement that raised new fears about an escalating threat of nuclear war. “On Jan. 2, I basically got in a month’s supply of pota sium iodide and I sold out in 48 hours,” said Jones, 53, who is a top distributor of the drug in the United States. His Mooresville, N.C., company sells all three types of the over-the-counter product approved by the Food and Drug Administration. No prescription is required. North Korean Leader Kim Jong Un just stated that the Nuclear Button is on his desk at all times. Will someone from his depleted and food starved regime please inform him that I too have a Nuclear Button, but it is a substantially bigger & more powerful one than his, and my Button works! Donald J. Trump (@ realDonaldTrump) January 3, 2018 In that two-day period, Jones reported, he shipped about 140,000 doses of pota sium iodide, also known as KI, which blocks the thyroid from absorbing radioactive iodine and protects from the risk of cancer. Without the tweet, he typically would have sent out about 8,400 doses to private individuals, he said.Jones also sells to government agencies, hospitals and universities, which aren’t included in that count. Alan Morris, president of the Williamsburg, Va.-based pharmaceutical company Anbex Inc., which distributes pota sium iodide, said he has seen a bump in need, too. “We are a wonderful barometer of the level of anxiety in the country,” Morris stated. A spokeswoman for a third company, Recipharm AB, which sells low-dose KI tablets, declined to comment on recent gro s sales. Jones claimed this isn’t the first time in recent months that jitters more than growing nuclear tensions have boosted income of the drug, which comes in tablet and liquid form and should be taken within hours of exposure to radiation. It’s the same substance often added to table salt to provide trace amounts of iodine that ensure proper thyroid function. Jones sells his tablets for about 65 cents every single, though they’re cheaper in bulk. Morris said he sells the pills to the federal government for about a penny apiece. Yet, neither the FDA nor the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends that families stockpile pota sium iodide as an antidote versus nuclear emergency. “KI (pota sium iodide) cannot protect the body from radioactive elements other than radioactive iodine if radioactive iodine is not present, taking KI is not protective and could cause harm,” the CDC’s internet site states. The drug, which has a shelf life of up to seven years, safeguards against absorption of radioactive iodine into the thyroid. But that means that it guards only the thyroid, not other organs or body systems, said Dr. Anupam Kotwal, an endocrinologist speaking for the Endocrine Society. “This is kind of mostly to protect children, people ages le s than 18 and pregnant women,” Kotwal explained.The Two-Way Trump Taunts Kim: My ‘Nuclear Button’ Is ‘Much Bigger’ Than Yours States with nuclear reactors and populations within a 10-mile radius of the reactors stockpile pota sium iodide to distribute in case of an emergency, according to the Nuclear Regulatory Commi sion. An accident involving one of those reactors is far more likely than any nuclear threat from Kim Jong Un, Dante Exum Jersey Anbex’s Morris said. Still, the escalating war of words between the U.S. and North Korea has unsettled many people, Jones explained. Although some of his buyers may hold what could be regarded as fringe views, many others do not. “It’s moms and dads,” he mentioned. “They’re worried and they find that these products exist.” Such concern was underscored past 7 days, when the CDC announced a briefing on the “Public Health Response to a Nuclear Detonation.” One of the planned se sions is titled “Preparing for the Unthinkable.” Hundreds of people shared the announcement on social media, with varying degrees of alarm that it could have been inspired by the presidential tweet. Does 21st Century America realize the horror of all of this?Remember duck-and-cover?Time to watch “On The Beach” for a little wake-up reality.#VeteransAgainstTrump @TheDemocratsRTThe #CDC Wants to Get People Ready for a Nuclear Detonation Jackson Steele (@askboomer1949) January 8, 2018 A CDC spokeswoman, however, mentioned the briefing experienced been “in the works” since very last spring. The agency held a similar se sion on nuclear disaster preparedne s in 2010. “CDC has been active in this area for several years, including back in 2011, when the Fukushima nuclear power plant was damaged during a major earthquake,” the agency’s Kathy Harben reported in an email. Indeed, Jones saw big spikes in pota sium iodide income soon after the Fukushima Daichii disaster, right after North Korea started launching mi siles and immediately after Trump was elected. “I now follow his Twitter feed just to gauge the day’s profits and determine how substantially to stock and how many radiation emergency kits to prep for the coming week,” Jones stated, adding later: “I don’t think he intended to have this kind of effect.” Kaiser Health News is a nonprofit news service covering health i sues. It is an editorially independent program of the Kaiser Family Foundation that is not affiliated with Kaiser Permanente. Follow JoNel Aleccia on Twitter: @JoNel_Aleccia.

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