Cadmium is a metallic element that is found naturally in the environment. It is used in a variety of industrial applications, including batteries, pigments, and coatings. In medicine, cadmium exposure can cause a range of health problems, including lung damage, kidney disease, and cancer.
Cadmium is considered a toxic metal, and exposure can occur through inhalation, ingestion, or dermal contact. The most common sources of exposure include smoking tobacco products, eating contaminated food, and working in industries that use or produce cadmium.
Exposure to cadmium can cause a range of health effects. Acute exposure can cause respiratory symptoms such as coughing, chest pain, and difficulty breathing. Chronic exposure can lead to kidney damage, which can progress to kidney failure, and lung damage, which can lead to emphysema and other respiratory diseases. Long-term exposure to cadmium is also associated with an increased risk of cancer, particularly lung cancer.
Treatment for cadmium toxicity depends on the severity of the exposure and the symptoms that develop. In cases of acute exposure, supportive care such as oxygen therapy or ventilation may be necessary. In cases of chronic exposure, the primary treatment is to remove the source of exposure and manage the resulting health problems. Chelation therapy may also be used to help remove cadmium from the body.