Posts Tagged ‘lead’

Repeat lead tests are advised for certain children, pregnant women and breastfeeding moms

Tuesday, April 10th, 2018

Recently the FDA and CDC issued a notice that some lead tests done by Magellan Diagnostics may be incorrect.

The FDA says “certain lead tests manufactured by Magellan Diagnostics may provide inaccurate results for some children and adults in the United States.”

If you have a child age 6 years old or younger, are pregnant or breastfeeding, speak with your healthcare provider or local health department to determine if retesting is needed.

The dangers of lead

Lead is a metal that comes from the ground, but it can be in air, water and food. You can’t see, smell or taste it. High levels of lead in your body can cause serious health problems for you and your family.

Children younger than 6 years of age can be severely affected by lead. It can cause developmental problems, hearing loss, vomiting, irritability, belly pain and weight loss. Very high levels of lead may even cause death.

Lead poisoning (high levels of lead in your body) can cause serious problems during pregnancy, such as premature birth, miscarriage, and high blood pressure. It can also cause fertility problems, mood disorders, headaches, muscle or joint pain, trouble concentrating, belly pain, anemia and fatigue in adults.

Where is lead?

Most lead comes from paint in older homes. When old paint cracks or peels, it makes dust that has lead in it. The dust may be too small to see. You can breathe in the dust and not know it.

Lead may be found in drinking water, at construction sites, in arts and crafts materials used to make stained glass, lead crystal glassware, and some soil.

For more information on lead poisoning, see our web article and the CDC’s information.

Bottom line

If you have a child age 6 or younger, or you are pregnant or breastfeeding, contact your healthcare provider to determine if a lead test should be repeated.

Understanding lead exposure

Friday, February 5th, 2016

water faucetYou have probably heard reports about lead being found in drinking water over the past few weeks. Lead is a metal. You can’t see, smell or taste lead, but it can be harmful to everyone, especially pregnant women and young children. You and your child can come in contact with lead by breathing it in from dust in the air, swallowing it in dust or dirt, or drinking it in water from pipes that are made of lead.

Here is some important information about lead:

High lead levels in the blood of pregnant women is associated with increased rates of preterm birth and other problems in their babies. Exposure to lead is more dangerous to children than to adults. About half a million to 1 million children in the United States have high levels of lead in their blood.

If you think your child has been exposed to lead from the water at home, tell your child’s health care provider. She can check your child’s blood for lead.

If you’re renting a home and are concerned about lead, talk to your landlord. He’s responsible for making repairs safely. If you need help talking to your landlord about lead, contact your local health department.

If you have lead pipes in your house or if you have well water, lead may get into your drinking water. Boiling water does not get rid of lead. If you think you have lead in your water:

  • Use bottled or filtered water for cooking, drinking and mixing baby formula.
  • If you’re using tap water, use cold water from your faucet for drinking and cooking. Water from the cold-water pipe has less lead and other harmful substances than water from the hot-water pipes.
  • Run water from each tap before drinking it or using it for cooking, especially if you haven’t run the water for a few hours. If the faucet hasn’t been used for 6 hours, run the water until you feel its temperature change.
  • Contact your local health department or water department to find out how to get pipes tested for lead. If you use well water, contact the Environmental Protection Agency’s Safe Drinking Water Hotline at (800) 426-4791 for information on testing your well water and household for lead and other substances that can harm your health.

Our website has a lot more information about possible sources of lead and how you can minimize contact. If you have any concerns about lead exposure to lead, make sure you talk to your health care provider.

Have questions? Email us at

Testing baby for lead

Friday, February 26th, 2010

If we’re able to dig ourselves out of the snow by tomorrow morning (we’re buried in NY), I’m taking my daughter to have some blood work done.  At her one year check-up her pediatrician wrote a prescription for her to be screened for lead. Unfortunately, this isn’t just a little stick in the finger, so we’re going to a lab where they’ll take blood from a vein in her arm. Ugh. I’m not looking forward to this, but it’s important so we have to go. To learn more read our fact sheet, Protecting Your Baby from Lead.

Lead causes serious damage to children’s brains even at relatively low levels of exposure. The effects are mostly irreversible. The American Academy of Pediatrics supports widespread lead screening of children.

Recall: Big Rex and Friends cloth books

Tuesday, January 12th, 2010

big-rexOver 200,000 cloth books with the title Big Rex and Friends have been recalled.  A red plastic dot in the book contains high levels of lead. Lead is toxic. It can be harmful to children’s health.

The book was sold at Barnes & Noble, Toys “R” Us, Amazon, Borders and other retailers between 2004 and 2009. St. Martin’s Press is the publisher.

For more info, visit the Web site of the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission.

Timberland boots for kids recalled

Thursday, December 17th, 2009

timberland-bootTimberland has recalled about 21,000 pairs of Classic Scuffproof Boots sold in toddler size 4 through junior size 7. The logo stamped on the inside of the boots has high levels of lead. Lead is a strong poison that can damage children’s brains.

For more information, visit the Web site of the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission.

Toy trucks and pajama sets recalled

Friday, December 11th, 2009

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) is recalling Super Rigs Play Sets because the toy trucks’ paint coating contains lead. Lead is a very strong poison that can be very harmful to children. The toys were sold between September and November 2009. Learn more about the toy truck recall.

The CPSC is also recalling Little Miss Matched Girls Pajama Sets because the clothing doesn’t meet federal children’s sleepwear flammability standards. The sleepwear can pose a risk of burn injury to kids. The pajama sets were sold in the U.S. between March 2008 and July 2009. Learn more about the pajama sets recall.