A review of heavy metals in indoor dust and its human health-risk implications. - GreenMedInfo Summary
A review of heavy metals in indoor dust and its human health-risk implications.
Rev Environ Health. 2016 Nov 15. Epub 2016 Nov 15. PMID: 27845887
Sock Yin Tan
Indoor dust acts as a media for heavy metal deposition. Past studies have shown that heavy metal concentration in indoor dust is affected by local human activities and atmospheric transport can have harmful effects on human health. Additionally, children are more sensitive to heavy metals due to their hand-to-mouth behaviour and rapid body development. However, limited information on health risks were found in past dust studies as these studies aimed to identify heavy metal concentrations and sources of indoor dust. The objective of this review is to discuss heavy metal concentration and sources influencing its concentration in indoor dust. Accordingly, high lead (Pb) concentration (639.10μg/g) has been reported in heavy traffic areas. In addition, this review paper aims to estimate the health risk to children from heavy metals in indoor dust via multiple exposure pathways using the health-risk assessment (HRA). Urban areas and industrial sites have revealed high heavy metal concentration in comparison to rural areas. Hazard index (HI) values found in arsenic (As), chromium (Cr) and Pb were 21.30, 1.10 and 2.40, respectively, indicate that non-carcinogenic elements are found in children. Furthermore, most of the past studies have found that carcinogenic risks for As, cadmium (Cd), Cr and Pb were below the acceptable total lifetime cancer risk (TLCR) range (1×10-6-1×10-4). The results of health risk assessment in this review show that carcinogenic risk exists among children. Hence, this proves that future studies need to focus on children's carcinogenic risk in indoor dust studies in order to find out the sources of heavy metals in indoor dust. This review highlights the importance of having the HRA application using bioavailable heavy metal concentration as it provides more accurate health-risk estimation. Moreover, this review is also useful as a reference for policy decision making in protecting children's health.