Mercury analysis

Mercury is a natural element found in soil, water and air. Even in small amounts, this liquid metal can lead to serious health problems. Mercury has a toxic effect on the human immune, digestive and nervous systems, it also affects the eyes, skin, kidneys and lungs. Typically, people are exposed to liquid metal poisoning by eating contaminated shellfish and fish..

Also extremely dangerous for the body are mercury vapors that penetrate the lungs and affect the mucous membranes (you can get such poisoning in the room in which the thermometer crashed). Examination of the body for mercury helps to detect the presence of a hazardous metal in the body. To determine the exact degree of poisoning, a urine test, a hair test for mercury, and a blood test for mercury are performed..

When is the body screened for mercury – indications

Everyone, at some level, is exposed to mercury. In most cases, the impact of liquid metal on the body is very minor, but acute exposure is possible, which can cause significant harm to health. For example, this can happen during a work accident. Some people are also chronically exposed to mercury, such as those who fish. Even ordinary household mercury poisoning from a broken thermometer can lead to serious consequences. One broken thermometer contains 2 g of mercury. When interacting with air, mercury immediately releases toxic fumes. Concentrations exceed MPC by 10-100 times. And if you aggravate the situation and use a vacuum cleaner to collect mercury, then it is 1000 times higher than the limit values. To identify the degree of infection and determine the level of danger to life and health, it is necessary to conduct a complete examination of the body for mercury..

Signs of mercury poisoning: Read

Mercury is a highly toxic element that can accumulate in tissues. This liquid metal is able to enter our body along with the air we breathe, penetrate through the skin, or with food. The greatest danger to humans is the inhalation of mercury vapor. Timely analysis for mercury will help determine:

  1. The presence of excessive content of liquid metal in the body.
  2. Diagnose chronic or acute poisoning.
  3. Detect methylmercury (this is the name of the mercury used in the manufacture of batteries, thermometers and amalgam fillings in dentistry).
  4. Evaluate excretion of mercury from an infected organism.

An analysis for mercury will show the level of this metal in the body – it is measured in μg / l. Reference values ​​will be indicators from 0 to 100 µg/l.

What methods can be used to test the body for mercury – details

To test for mercury, human biosubstances such as urine, hair, blood, and nails are used. Each method should be considered in more detail..

A blood test for mercury is recommended to get an accurate assessment of the degree of poisoning. To do this, you must use whole blood, blood plasma, or red blood cells. Organically bound liquid metal accumulates to a greater extent in erythrocytes. As a rule, the concentration of this toxic substance in red blood cells will be 2 times higher than in serum. It should be understood that a blood test for mercury will show poisoning only in the period from 1 day to 1 week.

A urine test for mercury will also help to get the correct picture of poisoning – this biomaterial is recommended to be used to assess the effect of liquid metal inorganic compounds on the body. As a rule, a urine test for mercury is carried out for toxicological and medical and hygienic purposes. It is best to conduct such an examination of the body for mercury using morning urine and determining the level of creatinine in it. A urine test for mercury will show poisoning in the period from 1 week to 1 month. Urinalysis for mercury is the most common and reliable.

More complex than the previous ones, the analysis of hair for mercury helps to obtain a retrospective assessment of the effect of liquid metal on the human body over a fairly long period of time. It is in the hair that traces of the toxic element last the longest – they can be detected even years after a person has come into contact with mercury. For this reason, hair analysis for mercury is carried out when poisoning could have occurred a long time ago..

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Expert opinion:

In our practice, we periodically encounter situations when young children do not admit that they broke a thermometer, dared and threw away or hid the fragments. Mercury continues to remain in the room, poisoning everyone who is there. The young body is much more susceptible to mercury vapor and the results of poisoning in children are much more deplorable. Therefore, it is necessary to carefully control the storage of mercury devices, and if such an accident does occur, immediately donate blood and urine for analysis to identify the degree of intoxication and determine further actions to preserve health.
Paramedic – laboratory assistant of the highest category 
Skorobogataya Olga

How to properly test for mercury – methods

How to take a blood test for mercury:

  1. A blood sample is placed in a test tube up to a certain mark.
  2. The tube with blood must be cooled for half an hour to room temperature..
  3. Before the arrival of the courier, the test tube must be stored in a refrigerator with a temperature regime ranging from +2 to +8 degrees.
  4. The resulting biomaterial sample must be transported to the laboratory for analysis on the day it was taken.

How to take a urine test for mercury:

  1. Morning urine collected after waking up should be placed in a clean and dry container. Women during urination should push the labia apart, and men should pull back the fold of skin to release the external opening of the urethra.
  2. The collected urine must be mixed and poured from it into a test tube no more than 50 ml, then close tightly with a lid. Urine cannot be taken from a pot or vessel.
  3. Before the arrival of the courier, store the container with urine in the refrigerator (temperature regime – from +2 to +8 degrees).
  4. On the day of taking the biomaterial, it must be delivered to the laboratory for a urine test for mercury.

How to take a hair test for mercury:

  • Hair must be cut at once at several points of the head, right at the roots (from the occipital parietal, temporal and frontal parts). If the hair is dyed, then you can take it for analysis two weeks after dyeing..
  • The resulting biomaterial must be placed in an envelope and sealed, then delivered to the laboratory for analysis within 24 hours.

Before taking the biomaterial, a person should not undergo special training.

In case of detection of any indicators of intoxication of the body with mercury. Exceeding the maximum permissible concentrations in the analysis of urine, blood, hair. The first step is to find the source of the infection. The most common case of mercury poisoning, precisely because of negligence and poor cleaning of mercury from a broken thermometer. After any spill of mercury – it is MANDATORY to conduct a survey for the presence of mercury.

Help with mercury spills.

Search for mercury, collection, demercurization is the business of professionals.

City service “Expert Mercury”, help 24 hours,
St. Petersburg and Leningrad region.

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8 (812) 309-13-43

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