In all, 134 of the workers in the reactor got acute radiation sickness and 28 died.
Perhaps the most famous case of radiation sickness in recent years occurred to Alexander Litvinenko, a former KGB spy. British authorities determined that Litvinenko was poisoned with radioactive polonium-210, and he died after a short hospitalization. A photograph of Litvinenko in his hospital bed showed him balding and sickly, a shadow of his former self.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.