Utilization of Scalp Hair for Evaluating Epilepsy in Male and Female Groups of the Pakistan Population

Concentrations of Fe, Cu, Zn, Cr, Mg and Ca are determined in scalp hair of adult epileptic and normal male and female subjects by atomic absorption spectroscopy. A total of 85 hair samples for nomal male/female subjects and 78 of male/female epileptic subjects were analyzed within the respective age groups of of 28 to 30 and 24 to 27 years. The study showed higher average concentrations of Zn, Fe, and Cu in normal male subjectys compared with the epileptic subjects. Levels of Ca, Mg, and Cr were lower in normal male adults than those found in epileptic subjects. Epileptic females showed higher average concentrations of Zn, Ca and Cu. The correlation coefficient study indicated significant correlation (r> 0.589 at P=0.001) between Fe and Cr, Mg, Ca and Cu for epileptic females only. For normal male subjects Ca showed a strong correlation for Zn and Fe and for Cr and Ca. The regression analysis showed the significant role of Zn, Cam Mg and Cr in scalp hair of normal and epileptic subjects. Accordingly, the metal –to-metal ratio analysis revealed critical Mg/Zn ratios as indicators of healthy (<1) and epileptic (>1) subjects. The ratio data are used for evaluation of the status of epileptic patients based on their ailment history.

W. Ashraf, M. Jaffar, D. Mohammed, J. Iqbal (The Science of the Total Environment 164(1995) 69-73)