Mercury exposure in an urban pediatric population

Philip O. Ozuah, Michael S. Lesser, James S. Woods, Hyunok Choi, Morri E. Markowitz

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

27 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Objective. - To determine the prevalence of elevated urinary mercury (Hg), as a marker of exposure, in a population of children drawn Methods. - A prospective consecutive patient series was conducted from November 1998 to January 1999 at an inner-city clinic in New York. Anonymous urine specimens from subjects (aged 1-18 years) were collected in mercury-free containers, split, acidified with 1:100 hydrochloric acid, and frozen. Cold-vapor atomic absorption spectrofluorometric assays were conducted simultaneously at laboratories at the University of Washington and the New York City Department of Health. Results. - We enrolled 100 children (mean age 9.4 years; 62% male; 55% Hispanic; and 43% African American). Assay results from both laboratories were strongly correlated (r = 0.8, P < .0001). Mean urinary Hg was 1.08 ± 1.82 μg/L. The 95th percentile for urinary Hg was 2.8 μg/L (range 0.2 to 11.7 μg/L). Five subjects had Hg levels above 5 μg/L. Conclusion. - We found that 5% of subjects had unsuspected elevated urinary Hg levels. This finding, in a group of inner-city minority children, strongly supports the need for further investigation of the sources of mercury exposure in this population.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)24-26
Number of pages3
JournalAmbulatory Pediatrics
Volume3
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 2003

Fingerprint

Urban Population
Mercury
Pediatrics
Hydrochloric Acid
Hispanic Americans
African Americans
Population
Urine
Health

Keywords

  • Mercury
  • Toxin esposure
  • Urban health

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health

Cite this

Mercury exposure in an urban pediatric population. / Ozuah, Philip O.; Lesser, Michael S.; Woods, James S.; Choi, Hyunok; Markowitz, Morri E.

In: Ambulatory Pediatrics, Vol. 3, No. 1, 01.2003, p. 24-26.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Ozuah, Philip O. ; Lesser, Michael S. ; Woods, James S. ; Choi, Hyunok ; Markowitz, Morri E. / Mercury exposure in an urban pediatric population. In: Ambulatory Pediatrics. 2003 ; Vol. 3, No. 1. pp. 24-26.
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