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Sci Total Environ. 2011 Sep 1;409(19):4054-62. doi: 10.1016/j.scitotenv.2011.06.003. Epub 2011 Jul 1.

Association between urinary arsenic and diabetes mellitus in the Korean general population according to KNHANES 2008.

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Department of Occupational and Environmental Medicine, Ulsan University Hospital, University of Ulsan College of Medicine, Ulsan, Republic of Korea.



We present data from the Korean National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (KNHANES) 2008 on the associations between urinary arsenic and diabetes mellitus in a representative sample of the adult Korean population.


This study was based on data obtained in KNHANES 2008, which was conducted for three years (2007-2009) using a rolling sampling design involving a complex, stratified, multistage, probability-cluster survey of a representative sample of the noninstitutionalized civilian population of South Korea.


Geometric means of total urinary arsenic concentration in females and total participants with diabetes mellitus were significantly higher than in participants without diabetes mellitus after adjustment for covariates, including age, seafood consumption, body mass index (BMI), hypertension, area of residence, regional area, education level, and smoking and drinking status. Multiple regression analysis after similar adjustment showed that total urinary arsenic concentration was associated with diabetes status in the females and total participants. In addition, after similar adjustment, the odds ratios (ORs) for diabetes mellitus in female participants and all participants were 1.502 (95% CI, 1.038-2.171) and 1.312 (95% CI, 1.040-1.655), respectively, for doubling of the level of urinary total arsenic concentration.


This study showed an association between total urinary arsenic concentration and the prevalence of diabetes mellitus in a representative sample of the adult population, especially women, with environmental arsenic exposure after adjustment for seafood intake and relevant diabetes risk factors.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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