How is methylmercury detected in the workup 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

Methylmercury concentrates in erythrocytes; therefore, mercury levels in blood remain high in acute toxicity. When ingested by humans, methylmercury is easily absorbed and retained by the body; it has a half-life in blood of about 44 days, which makes blood tests useful measures of acute exposure. [77]


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