Cadernos de Saúde Pública
Print version ISSN 0102-311X
BOISCHIO, Ana Amelia P. and BARBOSA, Antonio. Exposure to organic mercury in riparian populations on the Upper Madeira river, Rondonia, Brazil, 1991: preliminary results. Cad. Saúde Pública [online]. 1993, vol.9, n.2, pp. 155-160. ISSN 0102-311X. http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S0102-311X1993000200006.
This study analyzes mercury concentration in hair samples obtained from the population living in the Upper Madeira River basin, Rondonia. Out of 311 hair samples analyzed, 51% (n=158) had a mercury concentration of over 10 ppm. The wide variability of mercury concentration is well-illustrated by a family in which there were 5 cases with the highest mercury concentrations (90.6 to 303.1 ppm), while in another 5 household members, the concentration ranged from 7.0 to 13.3 ppm. Special atention must be paid to women in the childbearing age, since the fetus is more vulnerable to lower mercury concentrations. 53% (n=37) females in the reproductive age bracket (age group 4) displayed a mercury concentration above 10 ppm.
Keywords : Environmental Exposure; Mercury; Hair; Analysis; Fish Consumption.