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Study: Low levels of lead can damage children's kidneys

Category: Environmental Toxin Testing

According to a new study, small amounts of lead can harm a child's kidneys and may result in serious kidney disease later in life.

The U.S. Center for Disease Control and Prevention reports that levels of lead which exceed 10 micrograms per deciliter of blood are considered harmful. However, a recent study at Johns Hopkins Children's Center suggests that levels below that threshold are a significant health threat, according to Health Day.

"To our knowledge, this is the first study to show that very low levels of lead may impact kidney function in healthy children, which underscores the need to minimize sources of lead exposure," said lead author Jeffrey Fadrowski.

Even though exposure to the chemical has decreased considerably since the 1978 ban of lead in paint and the 1996 prohibition of lead in gasoline, researchers believe that better monitoring needs to be accomplished.

"Current exposure sources include industry, lead paint, folk remedies, glazed pottery, candy, and drinking water in some urban areas," the study reported, quoted by Reuters.

Inner-city children and adults living in low socioeconomic areas are said to be at particular risk.

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