Comparison of Urinary Heavy Metals and Pulmonary Function Test in Cafe Workers Based on Exposure to Secondhand Tobacco Smoke, Tehran 2021

Gholamreza Heydari


Background: Secondhand tobacco smoke exposure is one of the morbidity causes but it is ignored occasionally. Various studies have shown that hookah and cigarette smoke contain significant volume of heavy metals. This study was designed aiming biological monitoring of the level of heavy metals in the urine samples of workers in smoking cafés and its association with their lung function and respiratory symptoms in Tehran City.

Methods: The list of cafés in Tehran was provided, and they were divided into water pipe cafés (WPC), cigarette smoking cafés (CSC), and non‑smoking cafés (NSC); and then, 10 cafés were randomly selected from each group. Sampling was performed after explaining the study and obtaining the consent of the manager and staff. A check list of demographic data and smoking history was completed and analyzed.

Results: A total of 96 individuals were studied; there were 32 subjects in each group. All subjects were male. Six days a week, they worked about 10 h a day in café. The concentration of heavy metals in the groups of hookah and cigarettes was significantly higher and respiratory indices in these groups were significantly lower than non‑smoking group.

Conclusions: Exposure to secondhand smoke increases the urinary level of heavy metals and reduces the respiratory capacity of people and this can be highly pathogenic in the future. Comprehensive informing on human rights should be provided in this regard and smoking bans in public places must be properly enforced.


Heavy metals; lung function; second‑hand tobacco smoke,; smoking

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