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All About Tisue-Mineral Analysis. . .

(1) Why Tisue-Mineral Analysis?

A 1980 report from The Environmental Protection Agency ( E.P.A.) stated that human hair is one of the tissues of choice used biological monitoring of the highest priority toxic metals and for determining toxic metal exposure . The result of other studies performed in the U.S and abroad, confirmed that human hair may be a better tissue to use than blood or urine for studying community exposure to some trace elements. Hair mineral analysis may also identify long-term nutritional deficiencies that can be at the root of disease. The American government and law enforcement agencies have depended upon hair analyses for decades to provide conclusive evidence in crime investigations.

(2) What Is Tisue-Mineral Anaylsis?

Proper mineral balance is essential to preventing, as well as overcoming, health problems. The trace element analysis of hair performed at King James Medical Laboratory, Inc. is an important screening test for determining specific nutrient minerals and trace elements your body may be lacking. It can also reveal toxic element pollutants such as mercury, lead, cadmium or arsenic that you may have been exposed to. For many elements, hair more closely reflects the body’s mineral stores than blood or urine. Hair analysis is the most convenient laboratory test as an overall health indicator and measuring tool for biochemical mineral imbalance. Information obtained from hair analysis can contribute to the design of specific nutritional programs, which help restore the natural balance of the body. Hair analysis should be used as a screening test not a diagnostic test, nor does it measure vitamin levels.

King James Medical Laboratoy, Inc. is located in Cleveland, Ohio. The laboratory features the quantitative trace metal analysis of OMEGATECH®, historically known around the world as a leader in the evaluation of trace metals in human specimens.

(3) What Elements Are Tested?

Hair Analysis tests for the the following elements:

Aluminum - Iron - Phosphorus
Arsenic - Lead - Potassium
Cadmium - Lithium - Selenium
Calcium - Magnesium - Sodium
Chromium - Manganese - Vanadium
Cobalt - Mercury - Zinc
Copper - Molybdenum
Germanium - Nickel

The usefulness of hair analysis to monitor exposure to toxic metals such as mercury, lead, cadmium and arsenic has been well established. These toxins are ever present in our environment and cause wide ranging adverse health effects when in excess. Learning disabilities and behavior disorders in children, headache, fatigue, hypertension, and numerous other illnesses may result from continued exposure to toxic metals. Blood and urine tests have frequently been found to be inadequate in the detection of chronic, low level exposures that can be readily discovered with hair analysis. When toxic metal exposures are identified early, steps can be taken to avoid their potential adverse effects. As toxic metal exposures can often go unrecognized, it is important for individuals of all ages to monitor their level of exposure at least once a year.

(4) Trace Minerals, Mineral Deficiencies And Imbalances

Many well-fed Americans are trace mineral deficient due to consuming heavily processed foods grown in mineral depleted soils. An identified mineral deficiency can be corrected through diet and supplementation. Certain ratios and balances of minerals are ideal for good health or can suggest abnormalities. The OMEGATECH® HAIR ANALYSIS provides detailed information on trace minerals and element ratios which can be used to develop treatments.

Nutrient Absorption Efficiency

Clinical observations have shown that malabsorption is often present when many of the essential elements are low in hair. When these elements (particularly calcium, magnesium, zinc, copper and chromium) occur together below the reference ranges, inadequate nutrient intake or poor nutrient absorption may be found.

Easy To Comprehend Report Format

A one page summary highlights findings which deviate from customary reference ranges, recommends appropriate confirmatory follow-up tests and suggests approaches for preventing trace element imbalances. A narration discuses potential significance of clinically relevant hair elements;, suggests dietary, metabolic and environmental factors which can alter hair trace element pattern, and identifies possible sources of toxic element exposure. Nutritional recommendations suggest mineral/trace element supplements to prevent deficiency states, recommend nutritional antagonists of toxic elements and provide safe dosage and administration schedule. It must be noted, however, that these supplementation suggestions are generic in nature and are provided only as a guide. The recommendations are in accordance with safe and effective intake guidelines for minerals and trace elements as established by the Food and Nutrition Board of the National Academy of Sciences.

Quality Assurance

OMEGATECH® HAIR ANALYSIS are performed using ICP emission spectroscopy. Each measurement is compared against our matrix matched hair standards. By correcting for background interference, more reproducible data is obtained. OMEGATECH® reports show element detection limits in hair, not water. Thus more reliable interpretations of measurements can be made. Detection limits used are below the standard clinical ranges for each element so that the full value of hair analysis as a screening test can be attained.


1. Maugh, TH, Hair: A Diagnostic Tool to Complement Blood, Serum and Urine, Science, 2021271-1273(1978).

2. US Environmental Protection Agency Publication No 600/3-80-089. Washington, D.C., Government Printing Office, 1980.

3. Laker, M, On Determining Trace Element Levels in man: The use of Blood and Hair, Lancet II, 260-263(1982).

4. Wilhelm, M et al., Cadmium, Copper, Lead, and Zinc Concentrations in Human Scalp and Pubic Hair, Sci. Total Environ. 92:199-206(1990).

5. Sky-Peck, HH, Distribution of Trace Elements in human Hair, Clin. Physiol. Biochem. 8:70-80(1990).

6. Katz, SA & Katz RB, Use of hair Analysis for Evaluating Mercury Intoxication of the Human Body: a Review, J. Appl. Toxicol. 12:79-84(1992).

7. Foo, SC, et al., Metals in Hair as a Biological Indices for Exposure, Int. Arch. Occup. Environ. Hlth. 65:S83-S86(1993).

8. Wang, CT et al., Studies on the Concentrations of Arsenic, Selenium, Copper, Zinc and Iron in the Hair of Blackfoot Disease Patients in Different Clinical Stages, Eur. J. Clin. Chem. Clin. Biochem. 32:107-111(1994).

9. Contiero, E & Folin, M, Trace Elements Nutritional Status: Use of Hair as a Diagnostic Tool, Biol. Trace Element Res. 40151-160(1994).

10. Bencko, V, Use of Human Hair as a Biomarker in the Assessment of Exposure to Pollutants in Occupational and Environmental Settings, Toxicology, 101:29-39(1995).

11. MacPherson, A, et al., Beard Calcium Concentration as a Marker for Coronary heart Disease as Affected by Supplementation with Micronutrients including Selenium, Analyst, 120:871-875(1995).

12. Razagui, IBA & Haswell, SJ, The Determination of Mercury and Selenium in maternal and Neonatal Scalp Hair by Inductively Coupled Plasma-Mass Spectrometry, J. Appl. Toxicol. 21:149-153(1997).


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