Serum levels of selenium, calcium, copper magnesium, manganese and zinc in various human diseases.J Nutr 1979; 109(8):1432-7JN
Serum selenium as well as serum zinc, copper, magnesium, calcium and manganese were investigated in a control group of adult males and in 11 groups of patients in various disease states. Not only the change of each trace element but also the possible association between elements was studied in the various groups. All patients were fasting when sampled and studied only after the acute phase of the disease was corrected. Trace metal determinations were performed by atomic absorption spectrophometry (Mg, Ca, Cu, Zn) and by neutron activation analysis (Se, Mn). All patients showed low serum zinc when compared to controls. Cirrhotic patients had a low serum selenium level as well as low calcium, magnesium and zinc. Emphysemia and cancer patients had an elevated serum copper concentration while copper and manganese levels were elevated in congestive heart failure, infection and pschoses. To our knowledge this is the first time low serum selenium values have been demonstrated to be associated with the low serum zinc, calcium and magnesium levels found in cirrhotic patients.