Study stokes concerns of nerve damage among 9/11 responders
A preliminary study shows that exposure to the toxic dust at Ground Zero could be linked to nerve damage.
Researchers at Winthrop University Hospital in Mineola performed a preliminary study on mice. They found that that the dust and the toxins it contains caused neuropathy, or nerve damage, when exposed to the mice.
Dr. Marc Wilkenfield, who has dedicated his practice to working with Sept. 11 responders, says it's unclear how many first responders may be suffering from nerve damage. However, researchers want to get the word out to first responders that their neuropathy symptoms, such as numbness and pain, may be related to the toxic dust.
John Feal, of the Feal Good Foundation, says the newest health concern is not a surprise. "Neuropathy is in the Sept. 11 community, and we are going to ask first responders to come forward and help with this research," he says.
Treatment for nerve damage related to Ground Zero is not currently covered by the Zadroga Act, the federal law that provides care and compensation for those who worked at the site.