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Neurotoxicology. 1995 Fall;16(3):519-26.

Postural stability among manganese exposed workers.

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  • 1Department of Community, Occupational and Family Medicine, National University of Singapore, Republic of Singapore.


Postural stability was investigated by static posturography in 32 manganese exposed workers with exposure duration of 6.6 (range 1.1-15.7) years and 53 referent subjects. The mean current urine manganese concentration for the exposed was 6.0 micrograms/g creatinine (range 0.6 to 53.3). There was no significant differences between both groups for the postural sway parameters obtained during eyes open condition. However, significant differences were observed for L - length of sway path and Vel - mean velocity of the center of pressure along its path. The Romberg Ratios (the relationship between eyes closed/open conditions) for the exposed's Vel, L, and Ao were also significantly different from the referent. The study showed that manganese exposed workers had significantly poorer postural stability compared to a referent group. We postulate that this could be a subclinical effect of manganese on the basal ganglia (pallidus) resulting in the postural instability when the visual input is cut off. Based on the current urinary manganese levels, we were not able to obtain any significant association with the postural sway parameters.

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