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Cadmium and its health effects

Author Affiliations

  • 1Eskisehir Osmangazi University, Medical Faculty, Public Health Department, Eskisehir, Turkey
  • 2Izmir Katip Celebi University, Medical Faculty, Public Health Department, Cigli, Izmir, Turkey

Int. Res. J. Medical Sci., Volume 9, Issue (1), Pages 6-11, February,28 (2021)


Cadmium (Cd) is an odorless, tasteless and very toxic heavy metal and has been among the Group I carcinogens. Cadmium is used in steel plating, cadmium-nickel battery structure, batteries, coating of metals for corrosion protection, plastics and alloys as durability enhancers. Cadmium is mainly supplied to the body in the form of dust and smoke through air, water, soil and food chains (such as rice, vegetables, seafood), and some inorganic compounds are taken through the skin. Cadmium content in tobacco leaf and smoke is very high. A few days after intense exposure to Cd smoke, pulmonary edema can sometimes develop and even death. Chronic Cd intoxications affect the lungs, the circulatory system and the genital system, especially the kidneys. The most important result of chronic exposure is Itai-itai disease. Cadmium causes prostate, kidney and lung cancers. In terms of protection from the effects of Cd, it is very important to avoid water and foods with high Cd content and tobacco and their products. It would be beneficial to carry out awareness studies on Cd\'s health hazards and ways of protection to the risk group. It is extremely important to comply with legal requirements for protection from occupational exposures.


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