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CHEMM Intelligent Syndromes Tool (CHEMM-IST)

CHEMM Intelligent Syndromes Tool
CHEMM-IST is a prototype decision support tool developed by experts in medicine and emergency response as an aid for identifying the chemical a patient was exposed to in a mass casualty incident. Since CHEMM-IST is currently in the prototype phase of development, it should not be used for patient care and does not include every possible syndrome. This tool, once thoroughly tested and validated by a wide range of potential users via case studies, is intended for use by basic life support (BLS) and advanced life support (ALS) providers as well as hospital first receivers. The focus of CHEMM-IST is only on severe cases. CHEMM-IST assumes that the patient has undergone an exposure via the air, with potential toxic effects from what is inhaled from the air and also possible skin-related toxic effects from what might be deposited onto the skin from the air. Please contact the CHEMM development team if you would like to offer comments about CHEMM-IST.


Falcon Web Site (::Question::)  
Click on the toxic syndrome name below for the appropriate medical management guidelines.

Syndrome Prediction

Cannot yet assess. Please continue.

Acute Solvent Syndrome CHEMM-ist Website

Uncertain More Probable Most Probable

  • The scene is suspicious and/or a reasonably foreseeable setting for a chemical exposure.
  • This assumes that an inhalation exposure has occurred and the chemical has not deposited on the skin.
  • The focus is on the severe cases.
  • It does not include every possible CHEMM-relevant syndrome. For example, it does not yet include the questions and answers most relevant for predicting an incapacitating agent or a blister agent/vesicant.
  • The tool is for the basic life support (BLS) provider to use in a mass casualty incident.
  • It can also be used by advanced life support (ALS) first responders and hospital first receivers.


Clicking on any question (hyperlinked) above in Progress will allow you to go back to the question to select a different answer. The subsequent answers will be erased.

CHEMM-IST Overview

The CHEMM Intelligent Syndromes Tool (CHEMM-IST) is an advanced form of "FALCON: A Decision Support System for Hazardous Materials Incidents and Terrorism Response." FALCON was developed through "knowledge engineering" at the James Madison University as an undergraduate thesis project by student James Brandon Shreckhise (2006 undergraduate project and also described in limited detail in one publication1). The key expert involved in the development of FALCON is medical toxicologist Dr. Mark Kirk, and Dr. Kirk has been involved with other experts in medicine and emergency response in the development of CHEMM-IST. Through a series of interviews by Mr. Shreckhise with Dr. Kirk during the development of FALCON, Dr. Kirk's diagnostic expertise was first modeled using decision trees. These decision trees were then engineered into IF-THEN rules and used to create a prototype expert system. CHEMM-IST started with the foundation of FALCON; however, CHEMM-IST's design and implementation is very different, and its development was primarily accomplished via several group discussions of physicians and emergency responders with the facilitation by CHEMM Team. CHEMM-IST's developers attended the group discussions to design and test CHEMM-IST in these interactive sessions.

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  1. "Engineering a Medical Response Knowledge Base for FALCON: A Decision Support System for Hazardous Chemical Incidents." A Project Presented to the Faculty of the College of Integrated Science and Technology James Madison University In Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements for the Degree Bachelor of Arts by James Brandon Shreckhise. 2006.
  2. Frysinger SP , Deaton ML, Gonzalo AG, VanHorn AM, and Kirk MA . "The FALCON decision support system: Preparing communities for weapons of opportunity." Environmental Modelling & Software. 2007; 22:431-5.