Trends of Blood Cadmium Concentration among Workers and Non-Workers in the United States (NHANES 2003-2012)

Hui Miao, John S Ji
Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine 2019 October 15

OBJECTIVE: We aimed to explore the trend of blood cadmium (bCd) concentrations among workers and non-workers in US.

METHODS: We used serial cross-sectional data from the NHANES (2003-2012), including 23,243 subjects aged 20 and above. We used linear regression to analyze the trends of bCd levels adjusting for demographic variables and smoking status, stratified by occupations.

RESULTS: The geometric mean of bCd levels was 0.362 μg/L. Only 0.21% had elevated bCd concentrations (≥ 5 μg/L). Women, older age, ethnic minorities, people of lower SES, current smokers, blue-collars, and non-workers tended to have higher bCd levels. The bCd concentrations were stable through years in workers (n = 12,787), but had a decline from 0.532 to 0.476 μg/L (p-trend = 0.006) in non-workers (n = 10,456).

CONCLUSIONS: Cd exposure in US has been controlled to a safe level. Special protective measures should be taken for the lower SES group and blue-collars.

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