Objectives: In this study on the steelworkers, we aimed to investigate the impact of wet cupping therapy (WCT) on heavy metal levels in the blood.
Methods: This single-arm clinical trial was performed at Karabuk University Training and Research Hospital from January to August 2018. All patients received three WCT sessions once every month. Venous blood specimens were drawn prior to the first WCT session (venous 1) and following the third session (venous 2). Cupping blood samples were also obtained during the first session of WCT. Heavy metal levels were assessed by inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (ICP-MS) device. Thirteen metals were subject to examination: aluminum (Al), antimony (Sb), arsenic (As), cadmium (Cd), chrome (Cr), cupper (Cu), iron (Fe), lead (Pb), manganese (Mn), mercury (Hg), molybdenum (Mo), nickel (Ni), and zinc (Zn). Relationships between the blood samples were examined using Wilcoxon Signed Rank test by R statistical software.
Results: Forty-four subjects completed the study. The levels of Al, Cd, Cr, Cu, Mn, Mo, Ni, Sb (P < 0.001 in all), Hg (P = 0.024) and Pb (P = 0.012) were significantly lower in venous 2 samples compared to venous 1, while no significant changes were observed in the levels of Fe, Zn, and As (P = 0.575, P = 0.090 and P = 0.195, respectively). When compared to venous 1 the levels of Mn, Zn, As, Sb, Hg (P < 0.001 in all), Al (P = 0.003), Cr (P = 0.004), Cu (P = 0.022) and Mo (P = 0.014) were found significantly higher in cupping blood while Cd, Pb, and Ni were not at significantly different levels (P = 0.160, P = 0.079 and P = 0.713, respectively). Fe was found significantly lower in cupping blood (P < 0.001).
Conclusions: This study showed that WCT has significantly reduced heavy metal levels in the blood. It might be useful in workers who work in jobs where heavy metal toxicity can be seen.
- Ahmedi M, Siddiqui MR. The value of wet cupping as a therapy in modern medicine-An Islamic perspective. Webmed Cent. 2014.
- Aydin F. The effect of Kar-Demir on Karabük City population. Proced Soc Behav Sci. 2011;19:494-8. doi: 10.1016/j.sbspro.2011.05.160.
- Cappelletti R, Ceppi M, Claudatus J, Gennaro V. Health status of male steel workers at an electric arc furnace (EAF) in Trentino, Italy. J Occup Med Toxicol. 2016;11:7. doi: 10.1186/s12995-016-0095-8. [PubMed: 26900394]. [PubMed Central: PMC4761198].
- Murphy D, James B, Hutchinson D. Could the significantly increased risk of rheumatoid arthritis reported in Italian male steel workers be explained by occupational exposure to cadmium? J Occup Med Toxicol. 2016;11:21. doi: 10.1186/s12995-016-0111-z. [PubMed: 27152117]. [PubMed Central: PMC4857407].
- Rehman K, Fatima F, Waheed I, Akash MSH. Prevalence of exposure of heavy metals and their impact on health consequences. J Cell Biochem. 2018;119(1):157-84. doi: 10.1002/jcb.26234. [PubMed: 28643849].
- Benli AR, Sunay D. Changing efficacy of wet cupping therapy in migraine with lunar phase: A self-controlled interventional study. Med Sci Monit. 2017;23:6162-7. doi: 10.12659/msm.905199. [PubMed: 29284771]. [PubMed Central: PMC5755949].
- Arslan M, Gokgoz N, Dane S. The effect of traditional wet cupping on shoulder pain and neck pain: A pilot study. Complement Ther Clin Pract. 2016;23:30-3. doi: 10.1016/j.ctcp.2016.02.003. [PubMed: 27157955].
- Kim JI, Kim TH, Lee MS, Kang JW, Kim KH, Choi JY, et al. Evaluation of wet-cupping therapy for persistent non-specific low back pain: a randomised, waiting-list controlled, open-label, parallel-group pilot trial. Trials. 2011;12:146. doi: 10.1186/1745-6215-12-146. [PubMed: 21663617]. [PubMed Central: PMC3141528].
- Al Bedah AM, Khalil MK, Posadzki P, Sohaibani I, Aboushanab TS, AlQaed M, et al. Evaluation of wet cupping therapy: Systematic review of randomized clinical trials. J Altern Complement Med. 2016;22(10):768-77. doi: 10.1089/acm.2016.0193. [PubMed: 27557333].
- Ersoy S, Altinoz E, Benli AR, Erdemli ME, Aksungur Z, Bag HG, et al. Investigation of wet cupping therapy’s effect on oxidative stress based on biochemical parameters. Eur J Integr Med. 2019;30. doi: 10.1016/j.eujim.2019.100946.
- Ersoy S, İnci H, Sunay D, Kayıs SA, Engin VS, Benli AR. Wet cupping therapy improves health related quality of life: A self-controlled interventional study. Ankara Med J. 2019;19(2):270-7. doi: 10.17098/amj.581995.
- Cikar S, Ustundag G, Haciabdullahoglu S, Yuksel S, Dane S. Wet cupping (hijamah) increases sleep quality. Clin Invest Med. 2015;38(4). E258.
- Team R Core. R: A language and environment for statistical computing. Vienna, Austria: R Foundation for Statistical Computing; 2013. Available from: https://www.R-project.org.
- Weisskopf MG, Jain N, Nie H, Sparrow D, Vokonas P, Schwartz J, et al. A prospective study of bone lead concentration and death from all causes, cardiovascular diseases, and cancer in the Department of Veterans Affairs Normative Aging Study. Circulation. 2009;120(12):1056-64. doi: 10.1161/CIRCULATIONAHA.108.827121. [PubMed: 19738141]. [PubMed Central: PMC2760410].
- Nawrot TS, Thijs L, Den Hond EM, Roels HA, Staessen JA. An epidemiological re-appraisal of the association between blood pressure and blood lead: A meta-analysis. J Hum Hypertens. 2002;16(2):123-31. doi: 10.1038/sj.jhh.1001300. [PubMed: 11850770].
- Solenkova NV, Newman JD, Berger JS, Thurston G, Hochman JS, Lamas GA. Metal pollutants and cardiovascular disease: Mechanisms and consequences of exposure. Am Heart J. 2014;168(6):812-22. doi: 10.1016/j.ahj.2014.07.007. [PubMed: 25458643]. [PubMed Central: PMC4254412].
- O'Neal SL, Zheng W. Manganese toxicity upon overexposure: A decade in review. Curr Environ Health Rep. 2015;2(3):315-28. doi: 10.1007/s40572-015-0056-x. [PubMed: 26231508]. [PubMed Central: PMC4545267].
- Aaseth J, Skaug MA, Cao Y, Andersen O. Chelation in metal intoxication--principles and paradigms. J Trace Elem Med Biol. 2015;31:260-6. doi: 10.1016/j.jtemb.2014.10.001. [PubMed: 25457281].
- Ersoy S, Benlİ AR. Traditional detoxification method in Ottoman medicine: Regurgitation. Turk Klin Tip Etigi Hukuku Tarihi. 2018;26(1):45-7. doi: 10.5336/mdethic.2017-58728.
- El Sayed SM, Mahmoud HS, Nabo MMH. Methods of wet cupping therapy (Al-Hijamah): In light of modern medicine and prophetic medicine. Altern Integr Med. 2013;2(3). doi: 10.4172/2327-5162.1000111.
- Umar NK, Tursunbadalov S, Surgun S, Welcome MO, Dane S. The effects of wet cupping therapy on the blood levels of some heavy metals: A pilot study. J Acupunct Meridian Stud. 2018;11(6):375-9. doi: 10.1016/j.jams.2018.06.005. [PubMed: 29958995].
- Bashiri H, Bozorgomid A, Shojaeimotlagh V. Efficacy of wet cupping therapy (Hijamah) in patients with non-alcoholic fatty liver disease: A controlled clinical trial. Turk J Med Sci. 2020. doi: 10.3906/sag-1907-82. [PubMed: 31999405].
- Ma SY, Wang Y, Xu JQ, Zheng L. Cupping therapy for treating ankylosing spondylitis: The evidence from systematic review and meta-analysis. Complement Ther Clin Pract. 2018;32:187-94. doi: 10.1016/j.ctcp.2018.07.001. [PubMed: 30057049].
- Lee MS, Kim JI, Kong JC, Lee DH, Shin BC. Developing and validating a sham cupping device. Acupunct Med. 2010;28(4):200-4. doi: 10.1136/aim.2010.002329. [PubMed: 20643730].