From t́ime immemorial it has been known that workers in copper dust or alloys rich in copper are liable to have green stained hair and greenish deposits on the teeth and gums. Kaber and Hanson1 tell us that they even have a greenish tint to their perspiration, which may persist after a thorough bath, while the skin may actually be bronzed. However, with the exception of the involvement of the gums and perhaps pyorrhea, both of which are rare, the effects of the copper on the health are remote. Oliver,2 likewise, in his book on dangerous trades, does not consider working with copper as dangerous an occupation as working with brass. Rambousek3 says that the symptoms which have been described by some workers as those of chronic industrial copper poisoning are really due to a mixture of other poisonous metals with the copper, especially lead and arsenic.
COLE HN. EXTENSIVE COPPER SULPHATE NECROSIS: REPORT OF A CASE. Arch Derm Syphilol. 1924;9(5):589–593. doi:10.1001/archderm.1924.02360230049006
Coronavirus Resource Center
Customize your JAMA Network experience by selecting one or more topics from the list below.
Create a personal account or sign in to: