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Palladium: A review of exposure and effects to human health

: Kielhorn, J.; Melber, C.; Keller, D.; Mangelsdorf, I.


International journal of hygiene and environmental health 205 (2002), Nr.6, S.417-432
ISSN: 1438-4639
Fraunhofer ITA ( ITEM) ()
health effect; dental alloy; sensitization; nickel allergy; Auto catalytic convert; jewellery; Palladium toxicology; environmental exposure; nickel toxicology; catalytic converter; catalyst

Palladium is a metal the output and use of which has more than doubled in the past ten years. It is used in dental appliances, chemical catalysts, electrical appliances and jewellery, but the greatest increase in Pd demand has been in automotive emission control catalysts. Studies on Pd concentrations in ancient ice and recent snow samples reflect the increase in mining, smelting and use of palladium in the last decades. Increases of palladium in the environment have been shown in air and dust samples. There is no data as yet available to assess the effect of this exposure.
A major source of health concern is the sensitization risk of Pd as very low doses are sufficient to cause allergic reactions in susceptible individuals. Persons with known nickel allergy may be especially susceptible.