Navigation Links
Children more vulnerable to harmful effects of lead

CINCINNATI Contrary to prevailing assumptions, children are more vulnerable to the harmful effects of lead exposure at the age of 6 than they are in early childhood, according to a Cincinnati Childrens Hospital Medical Center study to be presented May 4 at the annual meeting of the Pediatric Academic Societies in Honolulu.

Although we typically worry about protecting toddlers from lead exposure, our study shows that parents and pediatricians should be just as, if not more concerned about lead exposure in school-aged children, says Richard Hornung, Dr.P.H., a researcher in the division of general and community pediatrics at Cincinnati Childrens and the studys main author.

The researchers found that blood lead concentrations (BPb) at age 6, compared to those at younger ages, are more strongly associated with IQ and reduced volume of gray matter in the prefrontal cortex of the brain, which is involved in planning, complex thinking and moderating behavior.

Overall, the childrens average BPb levels peaked at 13.9 micrograms of lead per deciliter of blood at age 2, then declined to an average of 7.3 micrograms per deciliter by age 6. For children, however, with the same average blood lead levels through age 6, those who received more of their exposure at age 6 had substantially greater decrements in intellectual ability than those more heavily exposed at age 2.

Lead toxicity is difficult to recognize in a clinical setting, but it can have devastating effects, says Bruce Lanphear, M.D., director of the Cincinnati Childrens Environmental Health Center and the studys senior author. We found that children may be particularly vulnerable to lead exposure just as the child approaches school age, during a period of rapid cognitive development.

Because IQ tests were not administered to children older than 6, it is unknown whether older children are even more vulnerable to environmental lead exposure, according to Dr. Hornung.

Approximately 310,000 U.S. children age 1 to 5 years have blood lead levels greater than 10 micrograms per deciliter, the level at which the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends public health actions be initiated. But research has consistently shown that blood lead levels considerably lower than 10 micrograms per deciliter are associated with adverse effects.

Federal and state regulatory standards have helped to minimize or eliminate the amount of lead in U.S. consumer products and occupational settings, according to the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS). Today, the most common sources of lead exposure in the United States are lead-based paint in older homes, contaminated soil, household dust, drinking water, lead crystal and lead-glazed pottery.

While extreme lead exposure can cause a variety of neurological disorders, such as lack of muscular coordination, convulsions and coma, lower lead levels have been associated with measurable deficits in childrens mental development and behavioral problems. These include hyperactivity, or ADHD, lowered performance on intelligence tests, and deficits in fine motor function, hand-eye coordination and reaction time. Chronic lead exposure in adults can result in increased blood pressure, decreased fertility, cataracts, nerve disorders, muscle and joint pain as well as problems with memory or concentration.


Contact: Jim Feuer
Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center

Related medicine news :

1. Children of depressed moms do better when dad is involved, SLU researcher finds
2. High pollution linked to poor lung function growth in children in Mexico City
3. NYC-area 1st: Morgan Stanley Childrens Hospital performs transcatheter pulmonary valve replacement
4. Obese Children Miss More School Days
5. Ultra-Runner to Run 63 Marathons in 63 Days for Children with Incurable Disease
6. Psoriasis Cure Now offers Back to School Resources for Parents of Children with Psoriasis
7. Researchers estimate about 9 percent of US children age 8 to 15 meet criteria for having ADHD
8. Majority of 2.4 Million U.S. Children With ADHD Not Diagnosed or Consistently Treated, According to New Gold Standard Study by Cincinnati Childrens Researchers
9. Practice-based intervention has sustained benefits for children and families
10. 1.5 million children could be saved
11. Annual flu shot cuts need for doctors visits, hospitalization among children
Post Your Comments:
(Date:11/30/2015)... DE (PRWEB) , ... November 30, 2015 , ... ... guest lecturer at a University of Delaware Accounting and Management of Information Systems ... software solutions for mid-market businesses. Sommer will speak at before student in the ...
(Date:11/30/2015)... ... November 30, 2015 , ... Cycling, running, and walking are regular Sunday activities ... morning of February 28, 2016. , That’s when the 7th annual ANF Group ... to help children and families at Joe DiMaggio Children’s Hospital. , The ...
(Date:11/30/2015)... ... November 30, 2015 , ... HemoTreat™ has announced that the ... ointment to its website. , “Our goal is simple:” says Michael Blasco, HemoTreat’s ... the comparison chart and ingredient list allows our customers to quickly see why, ...
(Date:11/30/2015)... ... , ... At Grand Dental PC, their priority is to deliver quality care ... problems, you need to turn to a dentist who listens and responds; an experienced ... friendly dentist who counsels you on the best ways to maintain and improve your ...
(Date:11/30/2015)... (PRWEB) , ... November 30, 2015 , ... Dr. Seth ... three office locations, patients can visit Dr. Margulies to experience the best available orthodontic ... hold the title of "NJ Top Dentist"! , Orthodontics is the branch of dentistry ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:11/30/2015)... , November 30, 2015 North America ... is expected to grow at a CAGR of 7.6% from 2015 ... valued at USD 135.6 million in 2014, and is expected to ... --> According to the new Market Research Report "North America ... By End User (Hospitals, ambulatory care, others) - Analysis And Forecast ...
(Date:11/30/2015)... , November 30, 2015 /PRNewswire/ ... --> adds a ... for 2010 - 2015 with comprehensive ... a range of deal types, such ... strategic alliances. ...
(Date:11/30/2015)... Nov. 30, 2015  Kevin Smith has been ... a global pioneer in wireless monitoring of vital ... MA , Mr. Smith will be responsible ... commercial strategy.  He will also directly oversee partnering ... clinical evidence for SensiumVitals, the first early warning ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: