Copper toxicity

Last revised by Daniel J Bell on 23 Mar 2019

Copper toxicity​, also known as copper poisoning or copperiedus, is the pathological result of excess elemental copper in the body. It may be acute, resulting in acute copper toxicosis, or a more chronic form, typified by Wilson disease.

Clinical presentation

Acute copper toxicosis

Acute toxicity results in a systemic illness with potentially severe sequelae:

Chronic copper toxicosis

Chronic toxicity results primarily in hepato- and neurotoxicity as seen in Wilson disease.


Acute copper toxicosis

The acute form of copper poisoning is rare and usually seen in the suicidal patients who deliberately ingest large quantities of copper-containing chemicals (e.g. copper sulfate) or when people accidentally consume copper-contaminated food and drink.

Chronic copper toxicosis

The results of chronic copper excess may be seen in:

ADVERTISEMENT: Supporters see fewer/no ads

Updating… Please wait.

 Unable to process the form. Check for errors and try again.

 Thank you for updating your details.