The government of Russia’s Arkhangelsk region reported today on the results of medical examinations that followed the region’s August 8 nuclear accident. The patients examined included doctors who treated the victims of the blast. While 110 health workers in a variety of roles did not display “radiation levels above acceptable standards,” one doctor did have unusually high levels of the radioactive isotope cesium-137 in his muscle tissue.
Medical specialists from Russia’s Federal Medical and Biological Agency (FMBA) told regional officials that the cesium-137 came from food items the doctor had previously ingested, not from the doctor’s contact with victims of a nuclear explosion. Cesium-137, they noted, “can accumulate in fish, mushrooms, lichens, and underwater plants.”
An employee of the Arkhangelsk regional hospital had previously told Meduza that the doctor whose tissues showed heightened cesium-137 levels was told he may have absorbed the isotope during a recent trip to Thailand. According to our source, FMBA experts told the doctor, “You must have eaten some Fukushima crabs!”