What are the possible outcomes of mercury toxicity?

Updated: Nov 05, 2018
  • Author: David A Olson, MD; Chief Editor: Tarakad S Ramachandran, MBBS, MBA, MPH, FAAN, FACP, FAHA, FRCP, FRCPC, FRS, LRCP, MRCP, MRCS  more...
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Answer

Outcome in mercury toxicity depends on the form of the mercury compound and the severity of exposure. Mild exposure to inorganic (ie, elemental, mercuric salt) and organic compounds can result in a complete recovery. Fatality is usually the result of severe exposure to mercuric salt. Most organic mercury exposures leave a neurologic sequela. Minimal dermal exposure to dimethylmercury has resulted in progressive neurologic deterioration and death, with initial symptoms delayed for several months.


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