[Copper and the human body]

Cas Lek Cesk. 1997 Nov 19;136(22):698-701.
[Article in Czech]


Copper is one of the essential trace elements. It is part of a number of enzymes. Deficiency of the element is manifested by impaired haematopoesis, bone metabolism, disorders of the digestive, cardiovascular and nervous system. Deficiency occurs in particular in patients suffering from malnutrition, malabsorption, great copper losses during administration of penicillamine. Sporadically copper intoxications are described (suicidal intentions or accidental ingestion of beverages with a high copper content). Acute exposure to copper containing dust is manifested by metal fume fever. Copper salts can produce local inflammations. Wilson's disease is associated with inborn impaired copper metabolism. In dialyzed patients possible contaminations of the dialyzate with copper must be foreseen as well as the possible release of copper from some dialyzation membranes. With the increasing amount of copper in the environment it is essential to monitor the contamination of the environment.

Publication types

  • English Abstract

MeSH terms

  • Copper / deficiency
  • Copper / physiology*
  • Copper / poisoning
  • Humans
  • Nutritional Requirements


  • Copper