Mercury exposure and its effects on fertility and pregnancy outcome

Basic Clin Pharmacol Toxicol. 2019 Oct;125(4):317-327. doi: 10.1111/bcpt.13264. Epub 2019 Aug 8.


Mercury (Hg), a highly toxic environmental pollutant, shows harmfulness which still represents a big concern for human health, including hazards to fertility and pregnancy outcome. Research has shown that Hg could induce impairments in the reproductive function, cellular deformation of the Leydig cells and the seminiferous tubules, and testicular degeneration as well as abnormal menstrual cycles. Some studies investigated spontaneous abortion and complicated fertility outcome due to occupational Hg exposure. Moreover, there is a relation between inhaled Hg vapour and reproductive outcome. This MiniReview evaluates the hypothesis that exposure to Hg may increase the risk of reduced fertility, spontaneous abortion and congenital deficits or abnormalities.

Keywords: dental amalgam; dental personnel; fertility; foetus; mercury.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Abortion, Spontaneous / chemically induced*
  • Abortion, Spontaneous / epidemiology
  • Environmental Exposure / adverse effects
  • Environmental Pollutants / adverse effects*
  • Female
  • Fertility / drug effects*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Maternal Exposure / adverse effects
  • Mercury / adverse effects*
  • Occupational Exposure / adverse effects
  • Paternal Exposure / adverse effects
  • Pregnancy
  • Prenatal Exposure Delayed Effects / chemically induced*
  • Prenatal Exposure Delayed Effects / epidemiology
  • Prevalence
  • Testis / drug effects


  • Environmental Pollutants
  • Mercury