The exposure group consisted of 47 workers (mean age 38.4 years) employed in a power station for more than 10 years. Only workers without diseases that may affect bone metabolism were included. The control group consisted also of 47 healthy individuals (mean age 39.1 years) which were not exposed to ionizing and non-ionizing radiation.
|magnetic flux density||0.53 µT||-||-||-||on work places and walking areas|
Bone mineral density was significantly decreased in the vertebrae L1-L4 and femur of the exposure group compared to the control group. Additionally, blood levels of alkaline phosphatase, phosphorus, RANK and RANKL were significantly increased in workers from the study group compared to those from the control group while the level of OPG was significantly decreased. The level of thyroxine was significantly lower in the study group when compared to the control group while the left anteroposterior diameter of the thyroid gland was significantly higher in the study group. Furthermore, the total antioxidant status was significantly decreased and the total oxidant status was significantly increased in exposed workers compared to those from the control group which led to a significantly increased oxidative stress index.
The authors conclude that occcupational long-term exposure to magnetic fields could affect bone and thyroid metabolism and induce oxidative stress.