PMID: 7939615Jun 30, 1994Paper

A 1982-1992 surveillance programme on Danish pottery painters. Biological levels and health effects following exposure to soluble or insoluble cobalt compounds in cobalt blue dyes

The Science of the Total Environment
J M Christensen, O M Poulsen


This paper provides a short overview of cobalt-related diseases with particular reference to the potential carcinogenicity of cobalt compounds, and a review of a 10-year surveillance programme on plate painters exposed to cobalt in two Danish porcelain factories. Clinical experience and epidemiological studies have demonstrated that cobalt exposure may lead to severely impaired lung function, i.e. hard metal lung disease and occupational cobalt-related asthma, contact dermatitis and cardiovascular effects. However, the evidence for the carcinogenicity of cobalt and cobalt compounds is considered inadequate (IARC, 1991). Most frequently, exposure to cobalt occurs simultaneously with exposure to other elements known to pose a health risk, (e.g. nickel, arsenic, chromium, tungsten). The importance of cobalt as sole causal agent in hard metal lung diseases, cardiomyopathy and cancer are still a matter of controversy. In the two Danish porcelain factories, cobalt blue underglaze dyes have been used since 1888. In contrast to the exposure experience of hard metal factories, the exposure of plate painters occurs with only low trace levels of other potentially harmful compounds such as the carcinogenic metals nickel, arsenic and chromi...Continue Reading


Apr 1, 1992·Scandinavian Journal of Work, Environment & Health·E PrescottJ M Christensen
Dec 1, 1988·Scandinavian Journal of Work, Environment & Health·E RaffnS Groth
Jan 1, 1985·International Archives of Occupational and Environmental Health·Y IchikawaS Goto
Jan 1, 1985·International Archives of Occupational and Environmental Health·G ScansettiF Fantoni
Jan 1, 1993·International Archives of Occupational and Environmental Health·J M ChristensenM Thomsen

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