While Marie Skłodowska's husband, Pierre Curie, died in a traffic accident, she died of cancer. Various sources claim that the radiation she got during their experiments might have contributed significantly to that. Obviously, the effects of radioactivity were not yet known at the time (not even much later).

Today, the acquired dose of the human body is measured in Sieverts, which is essentially the Gray (which is the mass-specific radioactive energy), weighted with the sensitivity of the organs.

Is it known, or at least estimated, how many Sieverts the Curies did get?

  • $\begingroup$ Of course, the total amount may be less important than, say, inhaling the wrong thing. However, the aplastic anemia that (maybe?) is what she had would seem less likely to be caused by inhaling vs lung cancer. However, the anemia also arises from chemical exposures so may not have been radiation-caused solely. Lab safety was, well, different back then. $\endgroup$
    – Jon Custer
    Mar 3, 2021 at 4:50
  • $\begingroup$ Not only experiments. A large part of the radiation amount that Marie Curie has received is connected to her X-ray analysis of wounded soldiers on the WW1 battlefields, that she has undertaken with an extreme commitment. $\endgroup$ Mar 6, 2021 at 18:56


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