The absorption of lead occurs mainly in two ways: The gastrointestinal route depends on age, diet, nutritional deficiencies. The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) has shown that even at very low levels, such as 5 micrograms per deciliter (mcg/dl), lead can cause significant health problems. High levels of lead may also cause seizures, coma, and death. Examples of high-risk occupations are featured below. Young children are particularly vulnerable to lead poisoning because they absorb 4–5 times as much ingested lead as adults from a given source. Adult lead poisoning commonly occurs from exposure to lead used in the workplace. Digestive problems. Workers can also sometimes bring lead residues into their home on their work clothes, skin, hair and equipment after contact with lead. Workers can inhale lead dust or fumes, or swallow dust while eating, drinking, or smoking through hand-to-mouth contact. Sci Total Environ 2003; 303:79. Because there are often no early symptoms, a blood test is the best way to identify children at risk of lead poisoning at an early stage. Food and drinking water is a potential source of lead poisoning in adults. However, by not getting properly diagnosed, there could be fatal consequences to the health of your loved one. Adults can also be exposed during certain hobbies and activities where lead is used. Lead is a toxic metal that produces many bad health effects. Lead exposure sources in Australia . Lead interferes with a variety of biologic processes and is toxic to many organs and tissues, including the heart, bones, intestines, kidneys and reproductive and nervous systems. Even in small amounts, lead can have harmful effects on the body, which may lead to lifelong learning, behavioral, reproductive, cardiovascular, and other health problems. It causes almost 10% of intellectual disability of otherwise unknown cause and can result in behavioral problems. Children tend to show signs of severe lead toxicity at lower levels than adults. Lead poisoning in adults from renovation of an older home. Author information: (1)Emergency Department, Boston City Hospital, Massachusetts. ommon symptoms of lead poisoning in adults include nausea, constipation, upset stomach, fatigue, impaired concentration, hearing loss, and joint pain, among many others.1 Lead poisoning in adults can have long-term effects, such as decreased fertility and high blood pressure. Lead poisoning is what happens when lead builds up in your body over a period of months or years. Blood tests can also be used for lead screening. Eating or breathing in dust from deteriorating lead-based paint is the most common cause of lead poisoning among children. Background Lead poisoning is a common environmental health hazard in developing countries. Preventing Lead Poisoning in Children and Adults. Lead Poisoning in Adults Adult Lead Blood Lead Level ( g/dL)* Management Recommendations <5 −No action required 5-9 − Lead education −Discuss possible exposures − Monitor BLL 10-19 − Decrease exposure − Eliminate exposure source for pregnancy − Consider exposure elimination for certain medical conditions 20-29 Reducing exposure to lead. How does lead enter the body? Because lead poisoning builds up over time, symptoms are often not as immediate or as recognizable as you would get with an infectious disease like a cold or the flu. Researchers have learned that lead can hibernate within bone for decades. In severe cases of lead poisoning, children or adults may present with severe cramping abdominal pain (colic-like pain), which may be mistaken for an acute abdomen or appendicitis. Lead is a metal that’s found in nature, deep within the ground. Lead poisoning is a type of metal poisoning caused by lead in the body. 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