Mercury element toxic chemicals penis-Syphilis – Its early history and Treatment until Penicillin and the Debate on its Origins

Nitric oxide NO , also called nitrogen monoxide , colourless toxic gas that is formed by the oxidation of nitrogen. Nitric oxide performs important chemical signaling functions in humans and other animals and has various applications in medicine. It has few industrial applications. It is a serious air pollutant generated by automotive engines and thermal power plants. Nitric oxide is formed from nitrogen and oxygen by the action of electric sparks or high temperatures or, more conveniently, by the action of dilute nitric acid upon copper or mercury.

Mercury element toxic chemicals penis

Mercury element toxic chemicals penis

Mercury element toxic chemicals penis

While occupying Naples the French soldiers indulged in a long bout Mercury element toxic chemicals penis celebration and debauchery, and within a short space of time it came apparent that they were afflicted by a terrible disease. Risk factors contribute collectively to endothelial dysfunction. In addition to more closely simulating conditions of human exposure, future studies should focus on individual susceptibilities. This substantial acute response is similar in magnitude to the effect observed with chenicals exposures on brachial Celermajer et al. This Certified nurses aide registry in nys holds even when the parents report a nonsmoking environment. This chapter reviews the evidence relevant to coherence, and includes the mechanisms relevant to the pathogenesis of diseases caused by secondhand smoke. It has few industrial applications. Using GC—MS as the detection method, researchers found no chemidals of secondhand smoke exposure on B[ a ]P albumin and hemoglobin adducts Scherer et al. The reduced efficacy of PAF-AH may explain the increased serum concentration of platelet- activating factor in smokers. These findings thus identify a possible effector cell for the increased BHR resulting from secondhand smoke exposure and indicate plausible mechanisms.

Lindy naked. The Health Consequences of Involuntary Exposure to Tobacco Smoke: A Report of the Surgeon General.

Elemental Mercury Acute No significant toxicological effects of elemental mercury after ingestion have been observed in a healthy person because the metal species is poorly absorbed in the gastrointestinal tract, at less than 0. Environmental Health. Retrieved August 27, Acute inhalation of high concentrations Casual sex in fruitvale washington a wide variety of cognitive, personality, sensory, and motor disturbances. Corrosion Doctors. The European Union directive calling for compact fluorescent pnis to be made mandatory by has encouraged China to re-open cinnabar mines to obtain the mercury required for CFL bulb manufacture. Because this Mercury element toxic chemicals penis strongly resists removal of an electron, mercury behaves similarly to noble gaseswhich form weak bonds and hence melt at low temperatures. Elejent element with atomic number Selenium and brain function: a poorly recognized liaison. Although this form of mercury appears to be less toxic than other forms, its use in traditional Chinese medicine has not yet been justified, as the therapeutic basis for the use of cinnabar is not clear. It is also used in fluorescent lighting.

NCBI Bookshelf.

  • Inhalational exposure is the most typical route of elemental mercury toxicity.
  • Mercury is a toxic and non-essential metal in the human body.
  • Mercury is a chemical element with the symbol Hg and atomic number
  • Mercury, also known as quicksilver, is a naturally-occurring metal that is toxic to living organisms.
  • Like cadmium, zinc and lead, mercury is a naturally occurring element known as a "heavy metal" and can be toxic to living organisms.

The remedies were few and hardly efficacious, the mercury inunctions and suffumigations that people endured were painful and many patients died of mercury poisoning. Only the Spanish influenza epidemic of accounted for more loss of duty during that war. Up until the early 20th century it was believed that syphilis had been brought from America and the New World to the Old World by Christopher Columbus in In a new hypothesis was put forward, that syphilis had previously existed in the Old World before Columbus.

The soldiers were mostly mercenaries — Flemish, Gascon, Swiss, Italian, and Spanish — and were accompanied by camp followers including cooks, medical attendants and prostitutes. While occupying Naples the French soldiers indulged in a long bout of celebration and debauchery, and within a short space of time it came apparent that they were afflicted by a terrible disease.

Muscles and bones became painful, especially at night. The sores became ulcers that could eat into bones and destroy the nose, lips and eyes. They often extended into the mouth and throat, and sometimes early death occurred. It appears from descriptions by scholars and from woodcut drawings at the time that the disease was much more severe than the syphilis of today, with a higher and more rapid mortality and was more easily spread , possibly because it was a new disease and the population had no immunity against it.

Voltaire wrote :. Then they were thrown out and deprived of Naples and Genoa. But they did not lose everything — syphilis went with them. By the end of the epidemic had spread throughout France, Switzerland and Germany, and reached England and Scotland in In August the Holy Roman Emperor Maximilian I proclaimed that nothing like this disease had been seen before and that it was punishment from God for blasphemy. It was a time of world exploration and Europeans took the disease to Calcutta in , and by it had reached Africa, the near East, China, Japan and Oceania.

De Vigo expressed the view that this was a new disease. They consist of small ulcerated pimples of a colour especially brownish and livid, sometimes black, sometimes slightly pale. These pimples are circumscribed by a ridge of callous like hardness. Von Hutten wrote of the terrible abscesses and sores, the nocturnal bone pains, dolores osteocopi nocturne , and the diseases of the internal organs, ulcers in the bladder and muscle disease.

He also considered it was a new disease not known to the ancients and not appearing in Europe until the end of the 15th century. Hieronymus Fracastorius. Fracastoro was a poet, mathematician and physician from Verona in the Republic of Venice, who in his work De contagione et contagiosis morbis first described typhus and wrote on contagion , contagious particles that could multiply in the human body and be passed from person to person or through the mediation of fomes , and which were the cause of many epidemic diseases.

In his poem Syphilis, sive morbus gallicus, Fracastoro tells of a mythical shepherd named Syphilus who kept the flocks of King Alcithous. So incensed was Syphilus that he blasphemed the Sun-God in good set terms and decided from henceforth to offer no sacrifices to him, but to worship King Alcithous. But the Sun-God, enraged, darted forth infection on air, earth, and streams, and Syphilus became the first victim of the new disease. Fifty to a hundred years after its appearance in Naples the disease became less virulent and less lethal.

The disease had several distinct phases. After these had healed and several weeks following, there appeared a generalised rash, often accompanied by fevers, aches and the night bone pains, dolores osteocopi nocturne , described by Von Hutton and De Vigo. When these healed, a long latent period occurred, lasting months initially and as history passed, several years, in which there were few symptoms.

The last phase consisted of the appearance of abscesses and ulcers, and the gumma referred to by Girolamo Fracastoro, often ending with severe debility, madness or death.

It was viewed by ordinary people as a sign of sin, for which they were shunned and punished. In Europe the authorities had become so concerned with the rise in venereal diseases that they attempted to control prostitution and sexual encounters outside marriage. In many other places strict regulations were issued for brothels and bathhouses, forcing prostitutes who had disease or infections out of employment, and mixed bathing was prohibited.

In , Thomas Sydenham, a British physician, wrote an opposing view that the moral aspect of syphilis was not the province of the physician, who should treat all people without judgement. During the 18th century medical thinking on the disease began to advance.

In Jean Astruc, a French royal physician and professor of medicine at Montpellier and Paris, wrote one of the first great medical works on syphilis and venereal disease, De Morbus Veneris. In the Italian anatomist and pathologist Giovanni Battista Morgagni published De Sedibus et Causis Morborum per Anatomen Indagatis in which he wrote that the symptoms of syphilis and gonorrhoea arose from separate conditions.

He described the association of late stage syphilis with a wasting and paralysis disorder known as tabes dorsalis. From about the middle of the 19th century to the middle of the 20th century the incidence of syphilis in developed countries declined, except in times of war.

In the early 16th century, the main treatments for syphilis were guaiacum, or holy wood , and mercury skin inunctions or ointments, and treatment was by and large the province of barber and wound surgeons. Sweat baths were also used as it was thought induced salivation and sweating eliminated the syphilitic poisons. In his poem Syphilis, sive morbus gallicus , Fracastoro described the use of guaiacum :. For internal use drink the first potion by the beaker twice a day: in the morning at sunrise and by the light of the evening star.

The treatment lasts until the moon completes its orbit and after the space of a month conjoins again with the sun. The patient must remain in a room protected from wind and cold, so that frost and smoke do not diminish the effect of the remedy. After a time however he did recognise its toxicity when administered as an elixir and resorted to using it either as an inunction, an ointment made from metallic mercury and rubbed into the skin, or as a suffumigation, the inhalation of and bathing of the body in fumes, or indeed both at the same time.

The massaging was done near a hot fire, which the sufferer was then left next to in order to sweat. This process went on for a week to a month or more, and would later be repeated if the disease persisted. Other toxic substances, such as vitriol and arsenic, were also employed, but their curative effects were equally in doubt. Treatment would typically go on for years and gave rise to the saying,.

Ammoniated and salicylated mercury ointments were developed and the pharmaceutical formulae for unguentum hydrargyri ammoniate and unguentum hydrargyri salicilate were still in the Australian Pharmaceutical Formulary in The English surgeon William Wallace introduced iodine therapy, potassium iodide with small doses of mercury. In the late 19th century various other metals such as tellurium, vanadium, platinum and gold were tried but were not effective. He had been experimentingfor some years with the use of arsenic compounds in treating trypanosomiasis.

Ehrlich then began experimenting with arsenic compounds in treating syphilis in rabbits. In Ehrlich was awarded the Nobel Prize for his discovery. In , A. Robert and Benjamin Sauton discovered the trypanocidal properties of bismuth, and in , Robert Sazerac, Constantin Levaditi and Louis Fournier successfully treated syphilis with bismuth. Arsenic, mainly arsphenamine, neoarsphenamine, acetarsone and mapharside, in combination with bismuth or mercury, then became the mainstay of treatment for syphilis until the advent of penicillin in The observation had been made that after a febrile illness the symptoms of neurosyphilis diminished, and the rationale was that it was easier to treat malaria with quinine than the syphilis with mercury or arsenic.

Fred A. Kislig and Walter M. Simpson, two American physicians, introduced in the treatment of electropyrexia, using a short-wave apparatus to induce pyrexia in a patient to treat syphilis and gonorrhoea.

This became a turning point in the treatment for syphilis as penicillin was shown to be highly effective when administered during either its primary or secondary stages, and it had few side effects of any significance when compared to mercury or arsenic.

Arnold wrote in of his early work with penicillin and syphilis:. Before the introduction of penicillin, the heavy-metal cure often caused thousands of deaths each year.

The morbidity and mortality of the disease itself was horrendous, involving all ages from the fetus to the elderly. Over the past five centuries, and particularly in the last century, the origins of syphilis have caused great controversy amongst historians, physicians, anthropologists and palaeontologists. A recent analysis of the evidence however by Kristin N. Harper, George J. The Columbian hypothesis that syphilis was brought to Europe from America in was reaffirmed in the s and s by a number of historians and physicians such as Harrison , Dennie , Goff , and Crosby The article also cited Butler as stating that historical evidence of aortic aneurysm being treated by Antyllus, a contemporary of Galen in Romans times, was evidence of the existence at that time of syphilis, and that Celsus accurately described a genital syphilitic chancre.

The evidence suggests that the disease existed in both hemispheres of the world from prehistoric times. In the last several decades development of palaeopathology has enabled close evaluation of Old World skeletons and many studies have published their findings of evidence for syphilitic bone disease. Rothschild published a review of the historical and palaeopathological record of syphilis. Rothschild found that the pathological osseotype features of syphilis were absent in human specimens from re-Columbian Europe, Africa and Asia.

However specimens with evidence of treponeal disease were identified from North America dating back some 8, years. Bruce Rothschild as co-author with Christine Rothschild in their review study in found that somewhere between and years ago the first identified osseotype evidence of syphilis occurred in North America and it appeared that syphilis had transmutated from yaws.

Rothschild also states that all evidence for treponeal disease existing in re-Columbian Europe represents isolated cases for which alternative diagnoses are more likely. They also stated that the rapid spread of syphilis throughout Europe around reflected the introduction of a virulent disease into a population that had not been previously exposed and had no immunity to it.

The authors concluded that among the 54 reports they evaluated using their criteria they did not find a single case of Old World treponeal disease that had both a certain diagnosis and a secure pre-Columbian date.

Know syphilis in all its manifestations and relations, and all other things clinical will be added unto you.

The origin of syphilis is still a topic of debate and research, believed by physicians and scholars up until early last century to have been brought to the Old World from America by Christopher Columbus.

In recent times, archaeologists and palaeontologists had found possible evidence it existed in the Old World before Columbus. This has been disputed by other researchers however and it seems that it is still possible that Columbus did bring syphilis, or its progenitor, to the New World.

Submit your article First felt strange pains, and sleepless passed the night. From him the malady received its name. Author Information. References 1. Rolleston JD. Venereal disease in literature. History of U. Military Medicine ; April Suppl : Venereal Diseases. Vol II. General Medicine and Infectious Diseases.

Ackerknecht EH.

United States Environmental Protection Agency. Electricity passed through mercury vapor in a fluorescent lamp produces short-wave ultraviolet light , which then causes the phosphor in the tube to fluoresce , making visible light. By Wm. Support Center Support Center. Because they are more soluble in water, mercuric salts are usually more acutely toxic than mercurous salts.

Mercury element toxic chemicals penis

Mercury element toxic chemicals penis

Mercury element toxic chemicals penis

Mercury element toxic chemicals penis

Mercury element toxic chemicals penis. Environmental Health Topics

Toxic effects include damage to the brain, kidneys and lungs. Mercury poisoning can result in several diseases, including acrodynia pink disease , Hunter-Russell syndrome, and Minamata disease. Symptoms typically include sensory impairment vision, hearing, speech , disturbed sensation and a lack of coordination. The type and degree of symptoms exhibited depend upon the individual toxin, the dose, and the method and duration of exposure.

Case—control studies have shown effects such as tremors, impaired cognitive skills, and sleep disturbance in workers with chronic exposure to mercury vapor even at low concentrations in the range 0. Occupational exposure has resulted in broad-ranging functional disturbance, including erethism , irritability, excitability, excessive shyness, and insomnia.

With continuing exposure, a fine tremor develops and may escalate to violent muscular spasms. Tremor initially involves the hands and later spreads to the eyelids, lips, and tongue. Long-term, low-level exposure has been associated with more subtle symptoms of erethism, including fatigue, irritability, loss of memory, vivid dreams and depression.

Research on the treatment of mercury poisoning is limited. Fish and shellfish have a natural tendency to concentrate mercury in their bodies, often in the form of methylmercury , a highly toxic organic compound of mercury. Species of fish that are high on the food chain , such as shark , swordfish , king mackerel , bluefin tuna , albacore tuna , and tilefish contain higher concentrations of mercury than others.

As mercury and methylmercury are fat soluble, they primarily accumulate in the viscera , although they are also found throughout the muscle tissue. Since fish are less efficient at depurating than accumulating methylmercury, fish-tissue concentrations increase over time. Thus species that are high on the food chain amass body burdens of mercury that can be ten times higher than the species they consume. This process is called biomagnification.

Mercury poisoning happened this way in Minamata , Japan , now called Minamata disease. In the United States, the Environmental Protection Agency is charged with regulating and managing mercury contamination. Additionally, the Mercury-Containing and Rechargeable Battery Management Act , passed in , phases out the use of mercury in batteries, and provides for the efficient and cost-effective disposal of many types of used batteries.

The United States Clean Air Act , passed in , put mercury on a list of toxic pollutants that need to be controlled to the greatest possible extent. Thus, industries that release high concentrations of mercury into the environment agreed to install maximum achievable control technologies MACT. In March , the EPA promulgated a regulation [] that added power plants to the list of sources that should be controlled and instituted a national cap and trade system.

States were given until November to impose stricter controls, but after a legal challenge from several states, the regulations were struck down by a federal appeals court on 8 February The rule was deemed not sufficient to protect the health of persons living near coal-fired power plants, given the negative effects documented in the EPA Study Report to Congress of The EPA announced new rules for coal-fired power plants on 22 December In the European Union , the directive on the Restriction of the Use of Certain Hazardous Substances in Electrical and Electronic Equipment see RoHS bans mercury from certain electrical and electronic products, and limits the amount of mercury in other products to less than ppm.

The ban applies to new devices only, and contains exemptions for the health care sector and a two-year grace period for manufacturers of barometers.

Satisfactory alternatives to Hg in products are available, and it is therefore fitting to induce a ban. Products containing mercury were banned in Sweden in In , Denmark also banned dental mercury amalgam, [] except for molar masticating surface fillings in permanent adult teeth. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. For other things called "mercury", see Mercury disambiguation.

Chemical element with atomic number Main article: Isotopes of mercury. See also: Category:Mercury minerals and Category:Mercury mines. See also: Category:Mercury compounds. Main article: Organomercury compound. See also: Amalgam dentistry. Mercauro Mercuro-iodo-hemol. See also: Mercury poisoning and Mercury cycle.

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In the case of accidental swallowing of elemental mercury such as from breakage of a thermometer, systemic toxicity is rare and generally not expected [ 3 ]. However, a defect on the gastrointestinal tract may alter the mucosal barrier and allow for increased bioavailability. Dermal absorption of elemental mercury is also limited.

Inhalation is a major exposure route of elemental mercury in the form of mercury vapor. However, inhaled mercury vapor, in contrast to inorganic mercury salts, accumulates in the central nervous system. Elemental mercury is in an uncharged monoatomic form, which is highly diffusible and lipid soluble.

Elemental mercury can cross the blood-brain barrier and blood-placenta barrier as well as the lipid bilayers of cellular and intracellular organellar membranes. Though elemental mercury vapor is rapidly oxidized to ionic mercury, it remains as vapor in the blood for a short time, which is long enough for a significant amount of mercury vapor to penetrate the blood-brain barrier before it is oxidized.

Mercury molecules can then be oxidized and accumulate in the brain [ 21 ]. The oxidized form will not effectively cross the blood-brain barrier. Notably, elemental mercury can pass through the mucosa and connective tissue of the nasal cavity, and from there it can be transported to the brain via the nerve cells of the olfactory system, namely the olfactory pathway.

The primary organs of mercury deposition following inhalation exposure to elemental mercury vapor are the brain and kidney. With time after exposure, the greater proportion of the body burden of mercury is found in the kidney, which occurs similarly to inorganic mercury compound ingestion. Urine and feces are the main pathways of excretion, although a small amount of inhaled mercury can be eliminated in the breath, sweat, and saliva.

The excretion of elemental mercury is dose-dependent and biphasic: initially rapid, then followed by slow excretion. The biological half-life of mercury is estimated to be approximately 30 to 60 days in the body [ 4 ]. The half-life of mercury in the brain is not entirely clear, but is estimated to be as long as approximately 20 years.

Elemental mercury is bound strongly to selenium or SH-groups after oxidation in the brain, which may contribute to remaining brain deposits for a long time [ 21 ]. Methyl mercury also exposed through fish consumption transformed to inorganic mercury in the brain and retained. The toxicity of mercury salts depends on their solubility.

Generally, mercurous compounds are less toxic than mercuric compounds because they are less soluble in water. Oral exposure to mercury salts presents relatively greater acute health effects than elemental mercury. Approximately 1 to 4 g of mercuric chloride is fatal in adults [ 25 ].

Mercury salts are more corrosive than elemental mercury, which enhance gastrointestinal permeability and absorption. An acute high dose exposure of mercuric salts primarily causes burning chest pain, darkened discoloration of the oral mucous membrane and severe gastrointestinal symptoms due to extensive corrosive damage to the gastrointestinal tract, and following symptoms and signs of mercurial stomatitis and impaired kidney function. Mercury salts are generally irritants on the skin that cause dermatitis, discoloration of the nails, and corrosion of the mucous membranes, and may also cause corrosive burns.

However, it is rare to be exposed to mercury salts through inhalation because of their generally solid and non-volatile state at room temperature [ 1 , 3 , 25 ].

Chronic inorganic mercury poisoning, which is rare and happens only with pure inorganic mercury salts, often occurs with elemental mercury poisoning. The target organ toxicity of inorganic mercury is kidney damage, mainly in the proximal convoluted tubules. Clinical symptoms and signs of inorganic mercury poisoning are polyuria and proteinuria especially low molecular proteinuria , which can develop into nephritic syndrome in severe cases, with hematuria and anuria [ 3 , 5 ].

However, inorganic mercury poisoning in children who used teething powders containing mercury compound i. Though the mechanism of toxicity has not been fully investigated, it is considered a type of hypersensitivity reaction. Acrodynia is probably caused by the deposit of mercuric chloride in the tissues. Exposure to elemental mercury vapor can produce pink disease in children [ 27 ]. In Korea, a case of acrodynia in a 3-year-old boy was reported after exposure to house paints and lacquer for 2 months [ 17 ].

Inorganic mercury salts are not lipid soluble, so they generally do not cross the blood-brain barrier to induce neurotoxicity or cross the blood-placenta barrier to cause developmental toxicity.

No significant toxicological effects of elemental mercury after ingestion have been observed in a healthy person because the metal species is poorly absorbed in the gastrointestinal tract, at less than 0.

The oral LD 10 is approximately g for a 70 kg adult [ 25 ]. Acute exposure to elemental mercury can produce dermatitis.

Local and systemic effects of mercury are caused by parental exposure to elemental mercury. Subcutaneous granuloma formation was reported following elemental mercury self-injection in the antecubital fossa and mercury embolism following intravenous injection of mercury [ 15 , 28 ]. Acute exposure to high levels of mercury vapor can lead to severe lung damage, even death due to hypoxia.

In a case of a family poisoned by mercury vapor from home gold ore processing in a poorly ventilated kitchen resulted in 2 children dying and the parents suffering from severe respiratory distress [ 7 ]. Acute exposure to mercury vapor by inhalation can produce central nervous system toxicity such as tremors, paresthesia, memory loss, hyperexcitability, erethism, and delayed reflex, which are commonly reversible [ 18 ].

With chronic exposure to mercury vapor, the notable target organs of toxic effects are the central nervous system and the kidneys. The major clinical features of chronic mercury poisoning from mercury vapor inhalation have been identified in occupational histories as a triad of tremors, psychological disturbances or erethism, and gingivitis [ 1 , 5 ]. Tremor is considered to be the early neurological sign of poisoning by elemental mercury, which presents intentional tremor or resting tremor, or both.

Erethism is a form of toxic organic psychosis characterized by excessive timidity, diffidence, increasing shyness, morbid irritability, mental hyperactivity, and outbursts of temper, along with memory impairment, difficulty in concentration, depression, and somnolence.

Gingivitis, stomatitis, and excessive salivation are also associated with high occupational exposure. Proteinuria is the most common sign of the kidney effects due to tubular damage, and nephrotic syndrome can occur in severe cases. In addition, peripheral nerve abnormality can present but is not common. However, workers exposed to mercury vapor may have abnormalities in sensory and peripheral nerve conduction [ 1 ]. Elemental mercury vapor may affect the human immune system and can result in a decreased resistance to infection, cancers, or immune dysregulation that can induce the development of allergy or autoimmunity [ 30 ].

Mercuric ions have a high affinity to the sulfhydryl groups of proteins in the cells, leading to non-specific inhibition of enzyme systems and cellular damage. While this is considered to be a principal mechanism of mercury toxicity, oxidative stress and the autoimmune response also contribute to the mechanism in mercury toxicities [ 5 , 19 ].

Overexpression of metallothionein following mercury exposure probably plays a role as a protective mechanism in the body [ 18 ]. Recently, the possible role of inorganic mercury in Alzheimer's disease has been suggested [ 31 ]. In an extensive literature review, experimental data from in vivo and in vitro studies strongly suggested an influence of inorganic mercury on the nervous system with mercury-induced pathological changes seen in Alzheimer's disease. Nonetheless, epidemiological studies suggest a much weaker relationship between mercury exposure and the pathoetiology of Alzheimer's disease.

Thus, a clear association between inorganic mercury and Alzheimer's disease has not yet been established. Nor is there sufficient evidence to support the relations between early exposure to mercury and the late onset of Alzheimer's disease. The brain is high oxygen consuming organ and demands a high level of antioxidants as compared to other organs.

Selenium and sulfur groups play a role in maintaining such homeostasis of oxidation and reduction in the brain [ 32 ]. Therefore, the long-term retention of inorganic mercury in the brain due to its strong affinity for selenium and selenoproteins, and potential oxidative stress, may play a role in inducing or promoting neurodegenerative diseases.

Further studies are needed to elucidate the relationship between mercury exposure and neurodegenerative diseases, especially in the aged. In this review article, we discussed two issues those are arguing about the effects of inorganic and elemental mercury compounds on human health also interested in public health.

Inorganic mercury creams and ointments have been used as antiseptics. However, recently, cosmetic soaps and creams including inorganic mercury compounds have been produced in several countries. Those products have usually contained mercury and mercury salts such as ammoniated mercury, mercury iodide, mercurous chloride, mercurous oxide, and mercuric chloride.

Young women use skin lightening products and cosmetics for their skin lightening and anti-freckle effects; they are used commonly in some African and Asian populations, and dark-skinned populations in Europe and North America [ 33 ]. Also, other cosmetics, such as eye makeup, cleaning products, and mascara, contain mercury as an ingredient. Inorganic mercury is absorbed through the skin by the transport of mercury across the epidermis and also via sweat glands, sebaceous glands, and hair follicles [ 19 ].

Mercury salts inhibit melanin formation by competing with copper in tyrosinase [ 34 ], resulting in skin lightening. The health effects of inorganic mercury compounds are mentioned in the section on toxicity in this review. Mercury poisoning after the use of skin-lightening products has been reported from several countries including Africa, Europe, US, Mexico, Australia, and China. For example, a year-old Chinese woman developed nephritic syndrome with minimal change after using a skin lightening cream, and her blood and urine mercury levels returned to normal with resolution of proteinuria after chelation therapy with D-penicillamine [ 35 ].

In Mexico, a year-old women developed malar rash, erythema on the palms and soles, hypersalivation, intention tremor, emotional lability, weakness, and insomnia with a high mercury level in urine and blood after using a cosmetic cream for 5 years [ 36 ].

Accordingly, it is necessary to prevent additional mercury exposure by strict prohibition of mercury use in cosmetic products, thorough assessment of mercury contamination in imported products, and public education on the adverse health effects of mercury-containing cosmetic products.

Mercury is either released as mercury vapor or inorganic ions from the amalgam filling by abrasion of the amalgam surface. Mercury vapor in the oral cavity may be inhaled into the lungs and absorbed through the respiratory system. Metal ions may pass into the oral fluid and be ingested in the gastrointestinal tract. Mercury vapor or inorganic mercury is distributed by the blood to most of the organs in the body.

However, the major target organs are the central nervous system and the kidney for mercury vapor and the kidney for inorganic mercury. The adverse health effects of metallic mercury vapor and inorganic mercury have already been discussed in this review.

The adverse health effects due to additional mercury exposure from dental amalgam remains a subject of debate among researchers. No differences in the number of amalgam fillings and in mercury levels of blood and urine were observed between self-complaints of somatic symptoms related to mercury exposure and less complaints in females with amalgam filling [ 39 , 40 ].

From those studies, Bailer et al. Bellinger et al. However, it is generally accepted that dental amalgam restoration may play the role of a major source of elemental mercury in the general population [ 2 ]. Several studies report that mercury levels of urine and blood are associated with amalgam exposure by dental filling in the general population and by occupational practice in dental practitioners [ 42 - 44 ].

The positive association between dental amalgam filling and urine mercury level was reported in elementary school children [ 45 ], and the level of urinary mercury was higher in dental hygienists than in the general population in Korea [ 46 ]. From autopsy studies, mercury levels in tissue samples including the brain were correlated with the total number of surfaces of amalgam restorations [ 2 ].

Kingman et al. Also, amalgam-related symptoms improved after amalgam filling removal [ 47 ], and the reduced mercury levels in blood and urine were observed following dental amalgam filling removal [ 48 ]. These findings support the causality between mercury exposure from dental amalgam filling and adverse health effects. Though significant health effects of mercury from dental amalgam have not been observed in the human population in Korea, 2 cases of mercury dermatitis on the peri-oral cavity and neck were reported after amalgam dental restoration [ 49 ].

There is still debate over whether the mercury absorbed from dental amalgam filling is associated with symptoms or signs of adverse health effects. However, a World Health Organization expert group concluded that dental amalgam is a principal source of mercury vapor in the general population [ 3 ]. Thus, mercury exposure from dental amalgam is essentially a public concern. The blood mercury level is useful when measured soon after a short-term and high-level exposure, but the level decreases within days of exposure.

The blood mercury does not correspond to the total body burden of mercury. Estimation of mercury concentration in the urine is the best biomarker of long-term exposure to elemental and inorganic mercury, and also as an indicator of body burden. Urinary mercury is derived directly from mercury deposited in the kidney tissue, which serves as the main deposit site during chronic mercury exposure [ 5 , 50 ].

Mercury analysis of hair may be useful for assessing chronic exposure because of the abundant sulfhydryl groups in hair. However, hair mercury is not recommended for biological monitoring of elemental and inorganic mercury exposure given the strong likelihood of external contamination and relatively small proportion of accumulation relative to organic mercury.

The top priority in management of mercury poisoning is to stop exposure to mercury immediately and to lower mercury concentrations in critical organs or injured sites.

Mercury excretion can be increased by using chelating agents, such as dimercaprol or British anti-lewisite , penicillamine and 2,3-dimercaptopropanesulfonic acid. In summary, even though overt mercury poisoning is rare today, the risk to human health remains a major public concern due to the wide distribution and continuous contamination of mercury in the environment from natural and anthropogenic sources. The health effects of exposure to mercury in individuals remain not entirely clear at present.

It is strongly recommended that the use of mercury products in industry and medicine should be eliminated as completely as possible as a preventive measure in public health. The authors have no conflicts of interest with the material presented in this paper. National Center for Biotechnology Information , U. J Prev Med Public Health. Published online Nov Jung-Duck Park 1 and Wei Zheng 2.

Find articles by Jung-Duck Park. Find articles by Wei Zheng. Author information Article notes Copyright and License information Disclaimer. Corresponding author.

Received Sep 12; Accepted Oct This article has been cited by other articles in PMC. Abstract Mercury is a toxic and non-essential metal in the human body. Elemental Mercury Elemental mercury from ingestion is poorly absorbed, at less than 0. Acute Oral exposure to mercury salts presents relatively greater acute health effects than elemental mercury.

Chronic Chronic inorganic mercury poisoning, which is rare and happens only with pure inorganic mercury salts, often occurs with elemental mercury poisoning. Elemental Mercury Acute No significant toxicological effects of elemental mercury after ingestion have been observed in a healthy person because the metal species is poorly absorbed in the gastrointestinal tract, at less than 0. Chronic With chronic exposure to mercury vapor, the notable target organs of toxic effects are the central nervous system and the kidneys.

Mercury in Skin Lightening Products Inorganic mercury creams and ointments have been used as antiseptics. Footnotes The authors have no conflicts of interest with the material presented in this paper.

References 1. Toxicological profile for mercury. Mercury in human brain, blood, muscle and toenails in relation to exposure: an autopsy study. Environ Health. Inorganic mercury: environmental health criteria Geneva: World Health Organization; In: Dart RC, editor. Medical toxicology. Clarkson TW, Magos L. The toxicology of mercury and its chemical compounds. Crit Rev Toxicol. Lodenius M, Malm O. Mercury in the Amazon. Rev Environ Contam Toxicol. Family poisoned by mercury vapor inhalation. Am J Emerg Med.

Elemental mercury exposure among children of thermometer plant workers. Four cases of chronic mercury poisoning.

Nitric oxide NO , also called nitrogen monoxide , colourless toxic gas that is formed by the oxidation of nitrogen. Nitric oxide performs important chemical signaling functions in humans and other animals and has various applications in medicine. It has few industrial applications. It is a serious air pollutant generated by automotive engines and thermal power plants. Nitric oxide is formed from nitrogen and oxygen by the action of electric sparks or high temperatures or, more conveniently, by the action of dilute nitric acid upon copper or mercury.

The gas is almost insoluble in water , but it dissolves rapidly in a slightly alkaline solution of sodium sulfite, forming the compound sodium dinitrososulfite, Na 2 NO 2 SO 3. It reacts rapidly with oxygen to form nitrogen dioxide, NO 2.

Nitric oxide is a relatively unstable, diatomic molecule that possesses a free radical i. In the chemical industry , nitric oxide is an intermediate compound formed during the oxidation of ammonia to nitric acid. An industrial procedure for the manufacture of hydroxylamine is based on the reaction of nitric oxide with hydrogen in the presence of a catalyst.

The formation of nitric oxide from nitric acid and mercury is applied in a volumetric method of analysis for nitric acid or its salts. Though it is a toxic gas at high concentrations, nitric oxide functions as an important signaling molecule in animals. It acts as a messenger molecule , transmitting signals to cells in the cardiovascular , nervous , and immune systems. The body synthesizes nitric oxide from the amino acid L-arginine by means of the enzyme nitric oxide synthase. From the endothelium, nitric oxide diffuses to underlying smooth muscle cells and causes them to relax.

This relaxation causes the walls of blood vessels to dilate, or widen, which in turn increases blood flow through the vessels and decreases blood pressure.

Nitric oxide is also produced by neurons nerve cells and is used by the nervous system as a neurotransmitter to regulate functions ranging from digestion to blood flow to memory and vision. In the immune system , nitric oxide is produced by macrophages, which are a type of leukocyte white blood cell that engulfs bacteria and other foreign particles that have invaded the body.

The nitric oxide released by macrophages kills bacteria, other parasites, and tumour cells by disrupting their metabolism. The drug nitroglycerin has been used since the late 19th century to relieve the condition known as angina pectoris , which is caused by an insufficient supply of blood to the heart muscle. Another medical use of nitric oxide is in the treatment of impotence , or erectile dysfunction, in men.

Nitric oxide is essential to the achievement of an erection. During sexual stimulation, nitric oxide released within the penis relaxes the smooth muscle cells of the corpus cavernosa, making it easier for blood to flow into those spongy tissues, the expansion of which hardens and elevates the penis. Nitric oxide is an important component of the air pollution generated by automotive engines and thermal power-generating plants.

When a mixture of air and hydrocarbon fuel is burned in an internal-combustion engine or a power plant, the ordinarily inert nitrogen in the air combines with oxygen at very high temperatures to form nitric oxide. The nitric oxide and hydrocarbon vapours emitted by automotive exhausts and power-plant smokestacks undergo complex photochemical reactions in the lower atmosphere to form various secondary pollutants called photochemical oxidants, which make up photochemical smog.

Nitric oxide combines with water vapour in the atmosphere to form nitric acid, which is one of the components of acid rain. Heightened levels of atmospheric nitric oxide resulting from industrial activity were also one of the causes of gradual depletion of the ozone layer in the upper atmosphere.

Sunlight causes nitric oxide to react chemically with ozone O 3 , thereby converting the ozone to molecular oxygen O 2. Nitric oxide. Article Media. Info Print Cite. Submit Feedback. Thank you for your feedback. See Article History. Alternative Titles: NO, nitrogen monoxide, nitrous air. Start Your Free Trial Today. Learn More in these related Britannica articles:. Some of these complexes have been known for many years—e.

Nitric oxide , NO, can be created in several ways. The lightning that occurs during thunderstorms brings about the direct union of nitrogen and oxygen in the air to produce small amounts of nitric oxide, as does heating the two elements together.

Commercially, nitric oxide is…. Nitric oxide reacts rapidly with oxygen to form brown nitrogen dioxide, an intermediate in the manufacture of nitric acid and a powerful oxidizing agent utilized in chemical processes and rocket fuels. History at your fingertips. Sign up here to see what happened On This Day , every day in your inbox!

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Mercury element toxic chemicals penis

Mercury element toxic chemicals penis