Clinical Use: Detecting exposure to cadmium, a toxic heavy metal.
Background: The toxicity of cadmium resembles the other heavy metals (arsenic, mercury, and lead) in that it attacks the kidney; renal dysfunction with proteinuria of slow onset (over a period of years) is the typical presentation.

Breathing the fumes of cadmium vapours leads to nasal epithelial deterioration and pulmonary congestion resembling chronic emphysema.

The most common source of chronic exposure comes from spray painting of organic-based paints without use of a protective breathing apparatus; auto repair mechanics represent a susceptible group for cadmium toxicity. In addition, another common source of cadmium exposure is tobacco smoke.

Reference Ranges: Smokers: 3 – 30 nmol/L
Non – Smokers: 3 – 10 nmol/L
Associated Diseases:
Patient Preparation: None required
Specimen Requirements: EDTA sample, whole blood. Do not centrifuge, dispatch as whole blood.
Turnaround Time: 2 weeks
Additional Information: Concentrations depend on smoking status. Record on request form if known.
Referred Test: Referred test
Location: Health and Safety Laboratory