Multiple chemical sensitivity (MCS) has an estimated American prevalence of 15%, and no consistently abnormal laboratory tests are available to assist in its diagnosis. Some physicians treating MCS patients have observed changes in intra-erythrocytic minerals (IEMs). As co-factors, minerals could influence detoxication of xenobiotics.
To test whether IEM differed comparing MCS cases with controls.
A total of 408 women meeting validated inclusion and exclusion criteria for MCS participated in this case-control study.
No statistically significant differences were observed. However, for copper, chromium, magnesium, molybdenum, sulphur and zinc, mean detectable levels were all lower in cases. No dose-response relationships were found.
IEM measurements do not appear to provide useful diagnostic markers for MCS.