Also part of the UPMC family:
Also part of the UPMC family:

Lessons from History About Biological and Chemical Terrorism

One of the reasons that we are prepared is that we are familiar with these poisons. Unfortunately, we've dealt with them before. Biological and chemical agents have been used as weapons throughout history. Historical perspective helps us to understand how biological and chemical agents have evolved from being used as weapons against soldiers in war to emerging as weapons of mass threat to civilians:

  • Biological and chemical agents have been used as unconventional warfare agents since the¬†sixth century BC.
  • In Medieval times, soldiers catapulted contaminated animal carcasses over fortress battlement walls to infect defending forces.
  • During the French and Indian War, ruthless British soldiers supplied smallpox-laden blankets to Native Americans who were sympathetic to the French. The resulting smallpox epidemic spread rapidly among the Native American population with devastating effects.
  • The horror of proactive, institutionalized chemical warfare emerged as a large-scale nightmare during World War I. Tens of thousands of unsuspecting troops were injured or killed after exposure to tons of corrosive and deadly battlefield chemicals such as chlorine, mustard, and phosgene.

Today, these weapons still pose a threat on the battlefield, but may also menace civilian populations. However, it is important to place the actual risk of exposure to these agents in perspective.

Find a Doctor

Browse UPMC doctors and medical professionals to find the care that's right for you. Customize your search by specialty, zip code, last name, and more.

Visit the UPMC Find a Doctor website.
Make an Appointment

Find important information on scheduling your appointment or finding a doctor or service that meets your needs.

Request an appointment now.
Find a Location

Browse addresses and contact information for our network of hospitals, specialty care practices, and community health locations.

Find a UPMC location near you.
Pay Your Bill

Learn more about how to pay your UPMC bill. Find resources including payment methods and contact information for assistance.

Pay your bill now.
Find a Career

Advance your career with UPMC. Discover our latest job listings and learn about our values and career pathways.

Find your ideal career at UPMC.