Arsenic is a trace element found in all human tissues. It is also a common heavy-metal poison that combines with intracellular proteins and is rapidly removed from the blood. It may become elevated when occupational (treated wood), environmental (coal burning), or intentional usage occurs. Sixty-three percent of ingested arsenic is excreted in the urine. Arsenic is found environmentally in well water and as an ingredient of pesticides, paints, treated wood, cosmetics, and antiprotozoal medications. Arsenic inhibits sulfhydryl enzyme systems required for cellular metabolism. Workplace exposure or chronic ingestion is associated with skin, lung and other cancers 

Blood specimens are used for rapid confirmation of acute poisoning, and blood levels are transitory. Because it can be found in keratin, specimens of hair and nails are used to pinpoint chronic exposure to arsenic. Urine specimens are used for rapid confirmation of acute poisoning and monitoring ongoing exposure. 


About Genomic Medicine UK

Genomic Medicine UK is the home of comprehensive genomic testing in London. Our consultant medical doctors work tirelessly to provide the highest standards of medical laboratory testing for personalised medical treatments, genomic risk assessments for common diseases and genomic risk assessment for cancers at an affordable cost for everybody. We use state-of-the-art modern technologies of next-generation sequencing and DNA chip microarray to provide all of our patients and partner doctors with a reliable, evidence-based, thorough and valuable medical service.