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Arch Environ Health. 1975 Aug;30(8):396-401.

Reproductive ability of workmen occupationally exposed to lead.


The reproductive ability of 150 men occupationally exposed to lead were studied by clinical and toxicological analysis. Subjects were divided into four groups: lead-poisoned workmen (23) and those showing a moderate (42), slight (35), or physiologic absorption (50). Findings show that (1) Lead poisoning as well as moderate increased absorption of lead decrease the fertile ability of men. An increased frequency of asthenospermia, hypospermia, and teratospermia have objectified the decrease. (2) Slight increased or physiologic absorption of lead do not significantly influence the fertile ability of workmen. (3) Hypofertility induced by lead is due, perhaps, to its direct toxic effect on the gonads, as no interference with the hypothalamopituitary axis were evidenced.

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