Environmental chemical assessment in clinical practice: Unveiling the elephant in the room

Bijlsma, N and Cohen, M 2016, 'Environmental chemical assessment in clinical practice: Unveiling the elephant in the room', International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, vol. 13, no. 2, 181, pp. 1-27.

Document type: Journal Article
Collection: Journal Articles

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Title Environmental chemical assessment in clinical practice: Unveiling the elephant in the room
Author(s) Bijlsma, N
Cohen, M
Year 2016
Journal name International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health
Volume number 13
Issue number 2
Article Number 181
Start page 1
End page 27
Total pages 27
Publisher MDPI AG
Abstract A growing body of evidence suggests chemicals present in air, water, soil, food, building materials and household products are toxicants that contribute to the many chronic diseases typically seen in routine medical practice. Yet, despite calls from numerous organisations to provide clinicians with more training and awareness in environmental health, there are multiple barriers to the clinical assessment of toxic environmental exposures. Recent developments in the fields of systems biology, innovative breakthroughs in biomedical research encompassing the "-omics" fields, and advances in mobile sensing, peer-to-peer networks and big data, provide tools that future clinicians can use to assess environmental chemical exposures in their patients. There is also a need for concerted action at all levels, including actions by individual patients, clinicians, medical educators, regulators, government and non-government organisations, corporations and the wider civil society, to understand the "exposome" and minimise the extent of toxic exposures on current and future generations. Clinical environmental chemical risk assessment may provide a bridge between multiple disciplines that uses new technologies to herald in a new era in personalised medicine that unites clinicians, patients and civil society in the quest to understand and master the links between the environment and human health.
Subject Public Health and Health Services not elsewhere classified
Keyword(s) Clinical practice
Environmental chemical assessment
Environmental medicine
Personalized medicine
Systems biology
DOI - identifier 10.3390/ijerph13020181
Copyright notice © 2016 by the authors; licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland. This article is an open access article distributed under the terms and conditions of the Creative Commons by Attribution (CC-BY) license (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/).
ISSN 1661-7827
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