Ann Occup Environ Med.  2019 ;31(1):e6. 10.35371/aoem.2019.31.e6.

A study of relationship between blood mercury concentration and hypertension in residents living in old mine fields and related factors

Affiliations
  • 1Department of Occupational and Environmental Medicine, College of Medicine, Dong-A University, Busan, Korea. medikim@dau.ac.kr
  • 2Heavy Metal Exposure Environmental Health Center, Dong-A University, Busan, Korea.

Abstract

BACKGROUND
In Korea, around the abandoned metal mines, heavy metals are being accumulating in the cultivated areas. Among exposed heavy metals, mercury is known to harm for cardiovascular system known to affect blood pressure. So, we studied the relationship between blood mercury level and hypertension in residents around abandoned metal mines.
METHODS
From 2008 to 2011, we surveyed 7,055 residents in provinces affected by abandoned metal mines and collected data from 6 Hospitals. We conducted a personal questionnaire interview survey with residents on the basis of household questionnaires, sex, age, household income, smoking, and drinking items. Multiple logistic regression analysis was performed to investigate the association between blood mercury level and hypertension.
RESULTS
We compared residents with low and high groups based on blood mercury level 5.8 μg/L, and higher group was significantly higher risk of hypertension than lower group (odds ratio [OR]: 1.277; 95% confidence interval [CI]: 1.135-1.436), also in adjusted model, higher group was significantly higher risk of hypertension than lower group (OR: 1.276; 95% CI: 1.117-1.457).
CONCLUSIONS
This study showed a significant correlation between mercury and hypertension in residents around abandoned metal mines. Therefore, we should continuously monitor people who are higher than the standard value and the hypertensive patients.

Keyword

Blood mercury; Hypertension; Abandoned metal mines
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