Academic Article


  • 2022

Aluminum (Al) is the most common element in nature after oxygen and silicon. Aluminum has been proposed to be a causative agent in the development of neurodegenerative diseases. Aluminum made available via the lungs, as it is in occupational settings, is probably better absorbed than that entering the body via the gastrointestinal tract. Neuropsychological tests are sensitive methods for detecting subtle functional impairment of the nervous system. This minireview is based on a systematic literature search for studies on workers occupationally exposed to aluminum. The tests were categorized as belonging to one of 12 different neuropsychological functions. The level of significance was set at p<0.05. Among the 559 papers identified, 24 fulfilled the inclusion criteria. There were no clear, consistent findings of occupational aluminum exposure being correlated with neuropsychological deficits. However, there was a weak tendency toward worse performances on tests related to information processing speed and a slight tendency toward weaker performances on memory tests for workers exposed to aluminum. The limited number of studies in this field makes it difficult to draw a clear conclusion regarding whether occupational exposure to aluminum increases the risk of altered neuropsychological function.

Bast-Pettersen, Rita
Industrial Health 60(2): 97–105
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