Heavy metal toxicity: Chelation therapy with 2,3-dimercaptopropane-1-sulfonate (DMPS) has been used to treat acute and chronic heavy metal poisoning. It is thought to work by forming an insoluble complex with the metal that is firmly bound to intracellular sites.
Arsenic poisoning: Early human evidence suggests that DMPS chelation may help treat arsenic poisoning.
Bismuth poisoning: In a case report, bismuth iodoform paraffin paste (BIPP), used for packing wounds and surgical cavities, resulted in neurological features of bismuth toxicity. After 27 days of intravenous DMPS chelation therapy followed by 24 days of DMPS taken by mouth, symptoms improved and serum and urine concentrations of bismuth decreased.
Cobalt poisoning: Authors of a case report note that chelation therapy with DMPS, ethylene diamine tetra-acetic acid (EDTA), or British Anti-Lewisite (BAL) is a treatment option for chronic cobalt poisoning.
Lead poisoning: DMPS chelation therapy has been used to treat lead poisoning in children. Other chelating agents structurally related to DMPS have been used for lead poisoning in adults following renovation of older homes with lead-based paint and were found to decrease lead levels steadily over several months.
In a case study, chelation therapy led to considerable clinical improvement of elemental mercury intoxication based on decreased urinary mercury concentration and normalization of electroencephalogram (EEG).
In a controlled study, five patients with long-lasting mercury poisoning showed significant decreases in blood, urine, and cerebrospinal fluid mercury levels after chelation therapy with DMPS.
A study observing the clinical effectiveness of DMPS on the urinary excretion of mercury in 10 occupationally exposed men demonstrated significantly increased mean urine mercury. DMPS was also found to effectively increase urine mercury after treating patients who had chronically applied mercury-containing cream to their skin.
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