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Arch Environ Contam Toxicol. 2000 Apr;38(3):377-83.

Exposure of the U.S. population aged 6 years and older to cadmium: 1988-1994.

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  • 1Division of Environmental Health Laboratory Sciences, National Center for Environmental Health, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 4770 Buford Highway, Atlanta, Georgia 30341-3724, USA.


Cadmium was measured in urine specimens from 22,162 participants in the Third National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES III 1988-1994). Urine cadmium, expressed either as uncorrected (microg/L) or creatinine corrected (microg/g creatinine) increased with age and with smoking. The arithmetic mean value for urine cadmium in the U.S. population was 0.57 microg/L or 0.48 microg/g creatinine. Based on our estimates, about 2.3% of the U.S. population have urine cadmium concentrations greater than 2 microg/g creatinine, and 0.2% have concentrations greater than 5 microg/g creatinine, the current World Health Organization health-based exposure limit.

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