Chrome-tanned leather (Hexavalent Chromium and leather products)

mayonnaise_clinic

Full Member
Dec 26, 2019
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0
    Hello
    Hexavalent Chromium can cause not only contact dermatitis but also many other malignancies. I always thought Chromium is something that can be ingested or inhaled only in special environment (such as welding industry or chrome plating industry). But I recently found out that chromium salt is commonly (almost 80% of the leather tannery) used in tanning process (thus called chrome tanned leather).
    Trivalent chromium, which is used in tanning process, does not pose any harm on human body. However, small amount of Trivalent chromium can be oxidized into Hexavalent chromium under certain conditions. (Humidity, Human sweat, heat, and natural aging of leather)
    This is worrisome because most of the shoes and boots we wear are made in chrome tanned leather. Combined with sweat of foot, This can result in oxidization of trivalent chromium into hexavalent chromium.
    And it's not just limited to shoes... sofa, leather garments, car sheet, and leather bracelet, you name it.
    Does this mean that we should stop using chrome tanned leather and switch to other materials?
    Can Hexavalent chromium penetrate skin and get inside our system? (in other words, can we be exposed to hexavalent chromium in forms other than hume or dust? in this case, via our skin, dissolved in sweats )

    What is your opinion on this issue?

    (Sorry for the poor English... I am an IMG and honing my English skills)

    Thank you
     
    Last edited:

    Dral

    Full Member
    10+ Year Member
    Jan 8, 2009
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    1. Attending Physician
      This is bordering on clinical advice based on your wording. However, it may prove a useful conversation (but I'm not a mod).

      I'm not sure that there are any experts on this specific topic on this forum who will be able to comment extensively about this, but I may be surprised.

      I see there is a manuscript from the 80s addressing this topic. I would suggest that you might get better information by doing a search of reputable sources on the topic. Otherwise, if it worries you that much, you could always choose to avoid those products. Companies like Birkenstock make leather alternative products, so it's not too difficult to avoid using leather products if someone is so inclined.
       
      Last edited:

      mayonnaise_clinic

      Full Member
      Dec 26, 2019
      11
      0
        This is bordering on clinical advice based on your wording. However, it may prove a useful conversation (but I'm not a mod).

        I'm not sure that there are any experts on this specific topic on this forum who will be able to comment extensively about this, but I may be surprised.

        I see there is a manuscript from the 80s addressing this topic. I would suggest that you might get better information by doing a search of reputable sources on the topic. Otherwise, if it worries you that much, you could always choose to avoid those products. Companies like Birkenstock make leather alternative products, so it's not too difficult to avoid using leather products if someone is so inclined.
        Thanks for the response. The more I think about it the more anxious I get cuz I like my leather boots. Maybe I should stop thinking about it. =) Thank you
         
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