Most Dangerous Form of Lead

The ban on lead paint in buildings in the late 1970s, as well as the phase-out of leaded gasoline in the 1970s and 1980s, have contributed in part to the decline in violent crime in the United States since the early 1990s. [86] The lead poisoning outbreak in Zamfara State occurred in Nigeria in 2010. As of 5 October 2010, at least 400 children had died from lead poisoning. [237] (1) U.S. CDC Advisory Committee on the Prevention of Lead Poisoning in Children. CDC updates the reference value for blood lead to 3.5 μg/dL. Atlanta: U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention; 2021 ( Treatment of lead poisoning consists of dimercaprol and succimer (Park et al., 2008). Due to persistent findings on cognitive deficits caused by lead poisoning, particularly in children, a significant reduction in exposure should be mandatory. Basophilic stripping is an important sign of lead poisoning.

This stripping makes the dots in red blood cells visible under a microscope (Patrick, 2006). Therefore, examination of the blood film for such signs could be effective in detecting lead poisoning. Lead poisoning is associated with iron deficiency anemia. Lead poisoning can also be assessed by measuring erythrocyte protoporphyrin (PE) in blood samples (Patrick, 2006). EP is known to increase when the amount of lead in the blood is high, with a delay of a few weeks (Kosnett, 2007). However, EDC concentrations alone are not sensitive enough to identify elevated blood lead concentrations below approximately 35 μg/dL (Patrick, 2006). Due to this higher detection threshold and the fact that PE levels also increase with iron deficiency, the use of this method to detect lead exposure has decreased. Blood lead levels are primarily an indicator of recent or current lead exposure, not total body burden. Measuring blood lead levels does not give the actual ratio of lead stored in the body, it is only an indicator of recent lead exposure. Lead throughout the body can be measured non-invasively in bone by X-ray fluorescence; This may be the best measure of cumulative exposure and total body burden (Kosnett, 2006). X-rays can also reveal foreign lead-containing substances, such as paint chips in the gastrointestinal tract (Kosnett, 2007; Grant, 2009).

Lead affects all organ systems of the body, especially the nervous system, but also bones and teeth, kidneys and cardiovascular, immune and reproductive systems. [52] Hearing loss and tooth decay have been associated with lead exposure,[53] as have cataracts. [54] Intrauterine and neonatal exposure to lead promotes tooth decay. [55] [56] [57] [58] [59] [60] [61] Apart from developmental effects that occur only in young children, the health effects for adults are similar to those for children, although thresholds are generally higher. [62] In the 2nd century BC, the Greek botanist Nicander described colic and paralysis in people poisoned with lead. [32] [5] Dioscorides, a Greek physician who lived in the 1st century AD, wrote that lead makes the mind „give way.” [110] [245] Due to prolonged exposure to lead for years, elimination is much slower. This is due to prolonged accumulation of lead in the released bones over a long period of time (Grant, 2009). In addition to bones, teeth and blood, many other tissues store lead in the body, including the brain, spleen, kidneys, liver and lungs (Dart et al., 2004). Small amounts of lead were found to be removed through feces and small amounts through hair, nails, and sweat (Rubin & Strayer, 2008). And yet, the interesting point is that lead does not play a physiological role in the body (Wolf et al., 2007; Rubin & Strayer, 2008), while its harmful effects are multiple. The effects of lead have also been well studied at the cellular level.

Heavy metals, including lead, create reactive radicals that damage cellular structures, including DNA and the cell membrane (Kosnett, 2006). Lead also interferes with enzymes that help in vitamin D synthesis and with enzymes that maintain the integrity of the cell membrane. Lead has also been found to interfere with DNA transcription. The illustrations are shown in Figure 3. In most cases, lead poisoning is preventable[90] by avoiding lead exposure. [22] Prevention strategies can be divided into individual medicine (family-led actions), preventive medicine (identification and intervention in high-risk individuals) and public health (population-level risk reduction). [18] Lead poisoning causes serious effects and concerns, but is mostly preventable. The best approach is to avoid exposure to lead (Rossi, 2008).

It is recommended to wash children`s hands frequently, and also to increase calcium and iron intake. It is also recommended to discourage children from habitually putting their hands, which can be contaminated, in their mouths, which increases the likelihood of being poisoned by lead. Vacuuming frequently and eliminating the use and/or presence of lead-containing items such as blinds and jewelry in the home can also help prevent exposure. Household pipes containing lead or lead installed in older homes should be replaced to avoid lead contamination from drinking water. Hot water is believed to contain higher levels of lead than cold water, so it is recommended that cold water for domestic use be preferred to hot water (Baselt and Randall, 2008). Exposure to lead at relatively low doses may have adverse effects that are not apparent in a standard clinical examination. This is called subclinical toxicity. Although not clinically obvious, the subclinical toxic effects of lead can be very harmful. On the other hand, intensive, acute, high-dose exposure to lead in children may lead to symptomatic poisoning (acute clinical toxicity). Common symptoms of lead poisoning include (but are not limited to): gastrointestinal, neurological and musculoskeletal difficulties.