JON HURDLE / NJ SPOTLIGHT – In the South Jersey town of Carneys Point, Dr. Mohamed Salem recalled a patient who came to him about a year ago with unexplained symptoms of fatigue and depression and turned out to have high levels of PFAS chemicals in his blood.
The patient, in his late 40s, was a long-term employee of Chambers Works, a 127-year-old chemical factory bordering the town where Salem runs his primary-care practice, and where the toxic per- and polyfluoroalkyl chemicals once used in Teflon and other consumer products have been found in many private wells.
The man’s symptoms were familiar to Salem, who has been practicing in the town since 1985, and has seen an increasing number of patients presenting with fatigue and lethargy over the past five years.
One hundred years of contamination
He attributed the symptoms to chemical contamination in the water and soil after more than a century of production at the plant where DuPont made Teflon and which is now owned by Chemours, a DuPont spinoff …