Radiation poisoning happens when someone is exposed to a high dose ionizing radiation in a short period of time. Ionizing radiation is the kind that is found from nuclear reactions and it can free an electron, nucleus or other subatomic particle from an atom when emitted or absorbed. Symptoms depend on what dosage you get in what amount of time, larger amounts increase the chance of symptoms like nausea, headaches, infection and vomiting and huge doses can lead to neurological events and eventually a very quick death. Once the dosage is high enough there is nothing anyone can do for you but wait for you to die and try to lesson discomfort but if you can be saved you might be treated with antibiotics or blood transfusions (to get blood counts back up).
Even after you have survived the acute infection you may still die or suffer from other illnesses associated with radiation poisoning, including multiple types of cancer.
Symptoms of the acute disease may be: dizziness, nausea, vomiting, losing conscienceless, headache, anemia, a reduced count of white blood cells and platelets and loss of appetite. Your skin is also severely affected when exposed, you may suffer from blisters and redness,sever damage, ulcers, permanent hair loss, loss or change of pigmentation, atrophy of : sweat glands, hair cells, skin regeneration, capillaries and lymph tissue and edema.
Exposure rarely occurs via ingestion (there’s a famous case of Alexander Litvinenko, however) and is usually caused by some nuclear explosion (which only happens at plants when safety regulations are hideously ignored), accidents, atomic weapons (not recently) or human error when calculating risks of radiation exposure. Low doses of radiation, such as those in x-rays and PET scans will not kill you.
Liebe Dich! - Akudo
The picture is from a VERY interesting documentary called Chernobyl Legacy by Paul Fusco. Swelling and malformations usually occur when the lymph system is affected.