Perchlorate is a simple salt compound made up of chlorine and oxygen. It is both naturally occurring and can be man-made.
How is perchlorate used?
It was used as a medicine to treat thyroid disorders for decades.
Because of its high oxygen content it is also used as an oxidizer in:
Solid Rocket Fuel
What are the health affects of perchlorate?
Perchlorate is eliminated from the body quickly and does not accumulate.
At very high levels, perchlorate can affect thyroid function, but it takes extremely high amounts and prolonged exposure before there is a risk of any adverse effects. Any effects from perchlorate are also reversible once exposure declines or stops.
Perchlorate does not cause cancer or birth defects.
What is Perchlorethylene?
According to the Michigan Occupational Safety & Health Administration, perchloroethylene has many names, including tetrachloroethylene, perc, PCE and tetrachloroethene. It is a manufactured chemical compound, most recognizable as a nonflammable liquid at room temperature. It evaporates easily into the air and has a sharp, sweet odor.
How is perchlorethylene used?
Perchlorethylene is a colorless, organic solvent used in dry-cleaning solutions and as an industrial solvent.
It is also used to degrease metal parts in the automotive and other metalworking industries. It appears in a few consumer products including paint strippers and spot removers.
What are the health affects of perchlorethylene?
Perchlorethylene is a central nervous system depressant. Inhaling its vapors in closed, poorly ventilated areas can cause dizziness, headache, sleepiness, confusion, nausea, difficulty in speaking and walking, and unconsciousness.
Those who work regularly with perchlorethylene may experience severe skin irritation from prolonged or excessive contact.