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Indian J Dermatol Venereol Leprol. 2018 Sep 17. doi: 10.4103/ijdvl.IJDVL_861_17. [Epub ahead of print]

Toenail concentrations of zinc, selenium and nickel in patients with chronic recurrent warts: A pilot two-group comparative study.

Author information

1
Department of Dermatology, Faculty of Medicine, Cairo University, Cairo, Egypt.
2
Department of Clinical and Chemical Pathology, Faculty of Medicine, Cairo University, Cairo, Egypt.
3
Egyptian Health Insurance Organization, Egypt.

Abstract

Background:

Normal immune functioning requires sufficient levels of trace elements including zinc and selenium, while elements such as nickel can be immunotoxic.

Aim:

To assess long-term abnormalities in zinc, selenium and nickel levels in patients with chronic recurrent warts.

Methods:

Toenail samples were taken from 28 patients with chronic recurrent warts and 30 apparently healthy matching controls were analysed. Toenail concentrations of zinc, selenium and nickel were measured using inductively-coupled plasma-optical emission spectroscopy.

Results:

Selenium levels were significantly higher in patients than in controls (P = 0.03). Levels of trace elements did not correlate with the number or duration of warts. Toenail nickel levels in all subjects were higher than globally reported values.

Limitations:

A small sample size and the absence of regional reference ranges for concentrations of trace elements in toenails.

Conclusion:

Zinc does not seem to be involved in the chronicity of warts, and it is unclear if selenium has a protective role against warts. Our finding of high concentrations of nickel in both patients and controls raises concerns about environmental exposure.

KEYWORDS:

Nickel; recurrent warts; selenium; trace elements; zinc

PMID:
30226475
DOI:
10.4103/ijdvl.IJDVL_861_17
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