Preliminary report of trace elements in mothers and newborns living in the Kola Peninsula and Arkhangelsk region of Russia compared to Norwegian populations.
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Recently, considerable attention has been allotted to the possible health effects of the industrial pollution in the regions adjoining the Norwegian-Russian border. As a measure of general health, the status of trace elements and some clinical-chemical parameters in serum and blood that reflect general health was assessed for 50 consecutive obstetric patients presenting at delivery departments of local hospitals in the Kola Peninsula, Arkhangelsk and selected centres in Norway. A written questionnaire and consent form were completed by each participant. Specimens of maternal and cord blood were collected. Corresponding samples were analyzed for copper, zinc, selenium, iron and ferritin. We found a lower birth weight in the Russian centres. The measurement of trace elements showed a higher iron status for the Russian females and relatively low serum zinc levels were observed in both the Russian and the Norwegian communities. It may be concluded that with the exception of zinc, the mineral status in the Norwegian and Russian arctic centres considered appears to be satisfactory.
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