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Occupational exposure to nickel, cobalt and chromium in the hard metal industry

Occupational exposure to nickel, cobalt and chromium in the Lithuanian hard metal industry


Authors: Kotryna Linauskiene, Jacob Dahlin, Zilvinas Ezerinskis, Marléne Isaksson, Justina Sapolaite, Laura Malinauskiene


Background: Metalworkers are said to have heavy exposure to metals, but the amount of released metal ions from alloys and deposition on the hands is unknown. Objective: To analyze nickel, cobalt and chromium release in vitro to artificial sweat from nails and wire made of different alloys and to test metal deposition on metalworkers' fingers. Material and methods: Six different samples of nails and wire were kept in artificial sweat for 24 hours and a week, respectively. The metal release was determined by AAS. 88 consecutive metal plant workers immersed their index and thumb fingers in separate laboratory tubes filled with deionized water, kept in for 2 minutes. The sample analysis for metals was carried out with an ICP-MS. Results: The average released concentration of Ni was 0.0012 μg/cm2 , Co - 0.0007 μg/cm2 , Cr - 0.0037 μg/cm2 after 24 hours and 0.0135 μg/cm2 , 0.0029 μg/cm2 , and 0.0042 μg/cm2 , respectively, after a week. The released concentration of Ni statistically significantly increased during a week, 0.0012 μg/cm2 vs 0.0135 μg/cm2 (P = .04). Medians of the detected Co amount on fingers statistically significantly differed between workplaces (0.004 μg/cm2 for metalworkers versus 0.001 μg/cm2 for office staff (P = .04). Conclusion: Ni, Co, and Cr can be released in different concentrations from nails and wire. Detected Ni and Cr levels can elicit dermatitis in already sensitized patients. Co can be extracted from alloys even if not mentioned on material safety data sheets. The finger immersion technique was used for cobalt and chromium detection on fingers for the first time. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved. Keywords: Lithuania; atomic absorption spectrometry (AAS); chrome; cobalt; finger immerse sample; inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometer (ICP-MS); metal release; metalworkers; nickel.


This article is a trending article in the field of Occupational and Environmental Medicine. The abstract above was written by the author(s) below. This study was conducted by the author(s) below and published in the journal or book below.


Authors: Kotryna Linauskiene, Jacob Dahlin, Zilvinas Ezerinskis, Marléne Isaksson, Justina Sapolaite, Laura Malinauskiene

Journal: European Society of Contact Dermatitis


Link 1: this article @ Pubmed

Link 2: this article @ Wiley Onlinr Library

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