For Science!
9 Things That Would Actually Happen to a Superhero Exposed to Radiation or Mutagen

CJ Miozzi | 6 Aug 2014 17:50
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8. Gain the power of... Hypothyroidism!

The thyroid gland is important to regulating our metabolism, among other things. When it isn't working properly, it can grow into a goiter that bulges from the neck or larynx. Radiation therapy to the neck has been known to mess with the thyroid, making it underactive - a condition known as hypothyroidism.

Some signs and symptoms of hypothyroidism include fatigue, poor memory and concentration, hair loss, weight gain, swelling, poor hearing, shortness of breath, and even carpal tunnel syndrome. These aren't exactly the calling cards of superheroes. How will Gambit throw cards with wrist cramps?

9. Gain the power of... Radiation burns!

Whether the visible effect is immediate or occurs months after exposure, radiation can leave burn marks on the skin. A sunburn is caused by the sun's ultraviolet radiation, and other radiation sources can produce similar - and deadlier - results. Red patches, blistering, skin peeling, hair loss, lesions... It's not pretty.

If radioactive smoke is inhaled, your lungs and gastrointestinal tract can be burned as well. And whether they are internal or external, fourth degree radiation burns can lead to death.

Starting to see a pattern? Radiation and mutagens are bad news. The only thing radical about the matter are the free radicals generated by radiation exposure.

That's right - as coincidental as it is, the scientific term "radical" refers to either atoms or molecules that have been broken free from their bonds, which can happen through exposure to radiation, as we discussed earlier. The radicals can then react chemically with the surrounding material.


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