Lead Poisoning

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Lead-containing products

Leaded gasoline ...

Lead compounds are used widely in paints, and lead paint is a major route of lead exposure in children ...

Residual lead in soil contributes to lead exposure in urban areas ...

In the US, 14–20% of total lead exposure is attributed to drinking water ...


Children are more at risk for lead poisoning because their smaller bodies are in a continuous state of growth and development. Lead is absorbed at a faster rate compared to adults, which causes more physical harm than to older people. Furthermore, children, especially as they are learning to crawl and walk, are constantly on the floor and therefore more prone to ingesting and inhaling dust that is contaminated with lead.

The classic signs and symptoms in children are loss of appetite, abdominal pain, vomiting, weight loss, constipation, anemia, kidney failure, irritability, lethargy, learning disabilities, and behavioral problems. Slow development of normal childhood behaviors, such as talking and use of words, and permanent intellectual disability are both commonly seen. Although less common, it is possible for fingernails to develop leukonychia striata if exposed to abnormally high lead concentrations.

2015 ... ongoing crisis in Michigan

January 2016

People of Flint speak: "Nobody should ... be living like this" / Detroit Free Press

Federal Emergency Is Declared in Flint Over Contaminated Water / New York Times, Jan 16, 2016

Obama declares Flint water emergency, Sanders demands Michigan Governor Resign ...

How Flint, Michigan became one of the most dangerous cities in America ...

National Guard to double numbers at water resource sites in Flint ...

Associated Press/Obama signs emergency order over Flint water ...

Gov. Snyder: Release communications and documents on Flint ...

Flint, Michigan has seen a spike in the levels of lead in children's blood. Lead poisoning, experts say, affects IQs and has lifelong impacts, including learning disabilities, speech and language problems and an increased risk for behavioral issues.

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