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Gold is the most elastic and ductile metal, a yellow color when solid, but black or purple when in granular from. It is a very soft metal and usually makes alloys that will give it more durability. It is a good conductor of heat and electricity and is not affected by air and most reagents.

Applications of gold

Gold is used in jewelry, glassware and electronics. Jewelery uses approximately 75% of all gold produced. Gold may have a number of shades depending on the metal with which the alloy was formed (white, red, blue, green etc.). Colloidal gold is added to glass to make it red or purple and metallic gold is applied as a thin film to the windows of large buildings to reflect the heat of the sun. Gold is used in the electronics industry to protect copper parts.

Gold is widely distributed on earth as a free metal and also when bound to quartz, ferrous pyrite and other metals.

Impact of Gold on Human Health

Inhalation of gold may cause irritation if the exposure is prolonged or excessive. Ingestion of gold has no known harmful effects. On contact with skin gold can cause irritation and allergic reaction, while contact with eyes can cause irritation.

Gold compounds have been used for medical purposes since antiquity and are still in use. Gold is used in the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis when treatment with non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs fails to provide relief.

Only the salts and radioisotopes of gold are of pharmacological value because elemental (gold) gold is inactive in all chemicals found inside the body (if ingested gold cannot be affected by stomach acid).

Gold alloys are used in restorative dentistry, especially in dental restorations, such as crowns and permanent bridges. Gold can be used as a food additive and has the number E175. Gold leaf, flakes or powder are also used in some gourmet foods, especially sweets and drinks as a decorative ingredient. However, since metallic gold is inactive in all of the body's chemical systems, it has no taste, no nutritional value and is left unchanged. However, gold soluble compounds, such as gold chloride, are toxic to the liver and kidneys.

In clinical practice, the use of DMPS is effective in mobilizing and excreting bismuth, mercury (organic and inorganic), copper, lead, arsenic, antimony, nickel, tin, tungsten and gold, but does not affect aaluminum or uranium excretion. In the majority of adult patients, mercury is the predominant metal eliminated after DMPS use. DMPS-stimulated metals are mainly excreted by the kidneys and to a much lesser extent by the liver (bile/stool). Another chelating agent for the mobilization of metals by the body, DMSA, is used in challenge tests, as well as for detoxification from lead, mercury and other sulfhydryl reactive metals (e.g. arsenic, antimony). Several studies have shown the efficacy of DMSA in increasing renal excretion of lead and mercury and in lowering the blood levels of these metals.

How can one determine if one has been exposed to gold?

We can measure gold levels in blood and most biological materials.

Determination of metals is done by ICP-MS (Inductively Coupled Plasma Mass Spectrometry, Inductively Coupled Argon Plasma Mass Spectrometry), a method that enables the simultaneous detection of many metals. Its sensitivity and accuracy are significantly better than conventional atomic absorption, with the ability to measure metals at concentrations up to 1 in 1015 (1 in 1 quadrillion, ppq)!





Important Note

Laboratory test results are the most important parameter for the diagnosis and monitoring of all pathological conditions. 70%-80% of diagnostic decisions are based on laboratory tests. Correct interpretation of laboratory results allows a doctor to distinguish "healthy" from "diseased".

Laboratory test results should not be interpreted from the numerical result of a single analysis. Test results should be interpreted in relation to each individual case and family history, clinical findings and the results of other laboratory tests and information. Your personal physician should explain the importance of your test results.

At Diagnostiki Athinon we answer any questions you may have about the test you perform in our laboratory and we contact your doctor to get the best possible medical care.

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