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Toxicol Appl Pharmacol. 2010 Nov 15;249(1):41-6. doi: 10.1016/j.taap.2010.08.012. Epub 2010 Aug 19.

The relationship between occupational exposure to lead and manifestation of cardiovascular complications in persons with arterial hypertension.

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Department of Internal Medicine, Occupational Diseases and Hypertension, Wroclaw Medical University, Pasteur 4, PL 50-367 Wroclaw, Poland.


The chronic exposure to lead represents a risk factor of arterial hypertension development. Ambulatory blood pressure monitoring is the most prognostically reliable method of measuring of arterial blood pressure. The study is aimed at evaluating the relationship between occupational exposure to lead and manifestation of cardiovascular complications in patients with arterial hypertension. The studies included 73 men (mean age, 54.26±8.17 years) with arterial hypertension, treated with hypotensive drugs: group I-persons occupationally exposed to lead (n=35) and group II-individuals not exposed to lead (n=38). An analysis of results obtained during ambulatory blood pressure monitoring disclosed significantly higher values of mean systolic blood pressure, mean blood pressure, pulse pressure, and variability of systolic blood pressure in the group of hypertensive patients occupationally exposed to lead as compared to patients with arterial hypertension but not exposed to lead. The logistic regression showed that a more advanced age, higher concentration of blood zinc protoporphyrin, and a higher mean value of pulse pressure represented independent risk factors of left ventricular hypertrophy in the group of persons with arterial hypertension and chronically exposed to lead (OR(age)=1.11; OR(ZnPP)=1.32; OR(PP)=1,43; p<0.05). In view of the above data demonstration that occupational exposure to lead represents an independent risk factor of increased pulse pressure may be of key importance in the process of shaping general social awareness as to harmful effects of lead compounds on human health.

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