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Moms dealing with elevated lead levels - Page 22

post #421 of 624
Quote:
Originally Posted by shannyshan View Post
My 18 month old daughter has never been tested. I asked the nurse practitioner about it and she said they don't do a routine test. However, I got them to issue me a lab slip for a blood draw. I was wondering though, should I do the hair test instead?? Are they better? Or should I do the blood and have them do an iron panel while they are pulling blood since she was anemic at her 1 year apt?

We had the heel stick done first (I think they can do a finger prick too) but when I asked for a blood draw the ped also ordered a CBC (Complete blood count) to check for anemia. (My DD's iron level was fine at 12 mos.) Unfortunately, having the blood drawn was a nightmare and we couldn't get a sample, so we're doing the hair test and maybe repeating the heel stick depending on the results. If I had it to do over again, I would have gotten some of the numbing gel to prevent the traumatic experience from the blood draw attempts. Now I think even if we numbed her it is the whole experience that would freak her out because she knows what's coming.
post #422 of 624

Low lead levels

I've been trying to read through this thread, but decided to skip to the end because I never seem to make it through before ds needs me.

Just a quick response about lower lead levels (forgive me if this was addressed earlier). There are effects at lead levels less than 10 (the "safe" level). Recent research has shown an IQ drop of 5 points by a lead level of 4 in children. This is the largest interval drop, after that it is about 2 points of IQ drop per 10 points of lead increase I think. Also, a level of 5 in a pregnant woman going into the third trimester can affect the fetus. If you want the links, let me know; I'll have to search for them again.

I don't mean to minimize the tragedy of having a very high level or say that a low level of lead is just as bad, but I do feel like Departments of Health have been arbitrarily using a level of 10 and thus encouraging pediatricians to ignore the issue of lead exposure in a large number of children.

I'll post about our story and questions later.
post #423 of 624

natural chelation

My son had a lead level of 8 at 9 months. He and I then moved out of the house while major work was done and then we had the house professionally cleaned of lead. We were separated from dp for 3 months, which was devastating for our family, but necessary nonetheless. His level dropped to undetectable within 3 mos. We did not give Fe supplements, but did increase iron and calcium in his food and avoided fried foods and in general fed him a very healthy, whole foods diet. His level at 2 1/2 is now 4.

Our holistic pediatrician wants to try chelating with DMSA, but I'm worried about side effects, especially since his level is not that high. Our chiropractor is suggesting Heavy Metal Detox (an herbal formula) and Cellular Defense instead. Does anyone have experience with these remedies. We would do urine testing during the treatment to determine effectiveness, etc.

Thanks. And I'll keep making my way through the thread to see if anyone has mentioned these or other remedies before.

Much love to all of you. Dealing with lead has brought me to new levels of fear and compulsivity, it really can make you crazy!
post #424 of 624
Quote:
Originally Posted by momster View Post
Much love to all of you. Dealing with lead has brought me to new levels of fear and compulsivity, it really can make you crazy!
s

This is so true. It does absolutely make you crazy.
post #425 of 624

Hair test results - where to start?

I x-posted this but wanted to see what you mommas think:

I am dumbfounded and don't know where to begin. I had my 16 MO daughter's hair test done by DDI because she had a heel stick lead test result of 9. I read the Lead Thread and joined the Autism-Mercury Yahoo group to get the discount on the hair test. I almost wish I hadn't.

I just got the results of her hair elements test and the lead & mercury I was worried about appear to be OK (3.9 and .29, respectively). However, her Aluminum, Antimony, Arsenic, Cadmium, Silver, Tin and Titanium are in the yellow range. (Lead is also in yellow, but the 3.9 is way lower than the 9-10 that I thought is the threashold for concern.) Moreover, her Total Toxic Representation is OFF THE CHARTS!

Also, her Potassium is very very high (380), Sodium, Boron, Iodine, Rubidium & Zirconium are in the high yellow range. She is also extremely low in Zinc (36) & Lithium (.004). Manganese, Selenium, Cobalt and Germanium are in the low yellow range.

I have a good ped but hair tests aren't "standard" so I don't think she will help interpret or know a thing about chelation. I have a homeopath/oriental practitioner but I'm not sure she is all that knowledgeable on metals. (She did "tap out" the lead with kinesiology, maybe that helped bring her down from 9 to 3.9?)

I also know of a DAN! dr in the area, but I don't know if I should go through the whole process of obtaining medical records to switch if I'm not sure I want to switch. I'm also a little scared of what he might recommend for her. I see on his website he does IV chelation and chelation challenges, which I thought the Autism-Mercury group frowned on.

Her symptoms are really mild, but have led me on this quest nonetheless. The main thing is chronic constipation, coupled with sleep disturbances and some hyperactivity. She has a little bit of cradle cap and bumpy skin, sometimes slightly dark circles under her eyes, but nothing major you could see from looking at her (she's beautiful, really)... I would feel bad posting to the Autism-Mercury group since their problems seem so much more pressing than mine.

What should I do?? Thanks in advance for any ideas.

ETA: BTW, I currently give her Vit C, probiotic, magnesium and fish oil every 1-2 days. I am going to start supplementing with zinc, and I've read that should help balance out the cadmium. I'm also going to get rid of the aluminum pans & foil in the house. I already don't wear anti-perspirant. Any other ideas where these things might be coming from??
post #426 of 624
I think you need someone to interpret the results. My understanding is that hair tests indicate what is being excreted, not the total body burden. She's probably using all the zinc to make metallothionen and get the lead out of her body! As for the antimony etc., it is a toxic world. They put that crap in the fire retardants they put on kids pjs! I don't think that chelation is advised for pre-verbal children. Your child needs to be able to report symptoms to you, like headaches and stomach aches- both side effects of chelation. I think that the cellular defense, and other such things, can be really harsh (kids vomiting and being miserable). Make sure her calcium and iron intakes are high, so that she doesn't re-absorb stuff she's trying to detox. Have you looked into yeast issues or gluten intolerance? They are common among autistic kids, and though the etiology of their issues and ours are not the same, many of the symptoms are similar. Yeast can cause cradle cap and bumpy skin (also a sign of needing vitamin a or efas), and gluten or other food sensitivities the other symptoms. Momster we would love those links. . .
post #427 of 624
I have a question.....
My naturopath said the hair test was good for my DD but for me she wanted to run a urine test, have me take a little chealator to stimulate anything, then retest. But I would have to wait on mine till I'm done nursing.
Any thoughts????
post #428 of 624
Could you do a urine test now to get a baseline? I have read that chelation "challenge" tests are very controversial. I would definitely wait on that till I did more research.
post #429 of 624
Quote:
Originally Posted by momster View Post
Just a quick response about lower lead levels (forgive me if this was addressed earlier). There are effects at lead levels less than 10 (the "safe" level). Recent research has shown an IQ drop of 5 points by a lead level of 4 in children. This is the largest interval drop, after that it is about 2 points of IQ drop per 10 points of lead increase I think.
A link would be great (I bolded what I'm especially curious about). I haven't read anything that specific and conclusive, although I agree with your overall point that research shows significant harm occurs under the official safety level of 10.

This is the relevant study I'm aware of:

Quote:
Environ Health Perspect. 2006 Feb;114(2):A85-6; author reply A86-7.

Low-level environmental lead exposure and children's intellectual function: an international pooled analysis.
Lanphear BP, Hornung R, Khoury J, Yolton K, Baghurst P, Bellinger DC, Canfield RL, Dietrich KN, Bornschein R, Greene T, Rothenberg SJ, Needleman HL, Schnaas L, Wasserman G, Graziano J, Roberts R.

Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center, Cincinnati, Ohio 45229-3039, USA. bruce.lamphear@cchmc.org

Lead is a confirmed neurotoxin, but questions remain about lead-associated intellectual deficits at blood lead levels < 10 microg/dL and whether lower exposures are, for a given change in exposure, associated with greater deficits. The objective of this study was to examine the association of intelligence test scores and blood lead concentration, especially for children who had maximal measured blood lead levels < 10 microg/dL. We examined data collected from 1,333 children who participated in seven international population-based longitudinal cohort studies, followed from birth or infancy until 5-10 years of age. The full-scale IQ score was the primary outcome measure. The geometric mean blood lead concentration of the children peaked at 17.8 microg/dL and declined to 9.4 microg/dL by 5-7 years of age; 244 (18%) children had a maximal blood lead concentration < 10 microg/dL, and 103 (8%) had a maximal blood lead concentration < 7.5 microg/dL. After adjustment for covariates, we found an inverse relationship between blood lead concentration and IQ score. Using a log-linear model, we found a 6.9 IQ point decrement [95% confidence interval (CI), 4.2-9.4] associated with an increase in concurrent blood lead levels from 2.4 to 30 microg/dL. The estimated IQ point decrements associated with an increase in blood lead from 2.4 to 10 microg/dL, 10 to 20 microg/dL, and 20 to 30 microg/dL were 3.9 (95% CI, 2.4-5.3), 1.9 (95% CI, 1.2-2.6), and 1.1 (95% CI, 0.7-1.5), respectively. For a given increase in blood lead, the lead-associated intellectual decrement for children with a maximal blood lead level < 7.5 microg/dL was significantly greater than that observed for those with a maximal blood lead level > or = 7.5 microg/dL (p = 0.015). We conclude that environmental lead exposure in children who have maximal blood lead levels < 7.5 microg/dL is associated with intellectual deficits.
Apologies if this has already been posted - I've never made it through every page of this thread.

Another thing that remains unclear is that once the lead level starts dropping, how much difference it makes how much time your child spent at the higher lead levels.

(Mods - this is an abstract and intended to be quoted as such and in full, so no copyright violation is occurring)
post #430 of 624
Sorry for my ignornnace -- so the study concludes it is levels greater than 7.5 that are problematic?
post #431 of 624
Quote:
Originally Posted by 3cuties View Post
Sorry for my ignornnace -- so the study concludes it is levels greater than 7.5 that are problematic?
No, the opposite, actually. They found that the greatest rate of IQ loss happens between 2.4 and 10. Cognitive deficits continue to increase above 10, but at a slower rate. Their main conclusion is that levels under 7.5 do cause intellectual deficits.
post #432 of 624
Oh it's so good to connect with some mamas who are as concerned about this as I am! Most mamas I meet just act like I am an overly scientific freak!

DS picked up Lead in Upstate NY where many of the homes have lead. I think his came from my IL's house and we just haven't been able to address it with them. They CANNOT afford to replace the windows in question. I think it goes like this, they have a 10 year old carpet, so while they don't open & close their lead windows too much, the rug has been absorbing & storing lead dust from the windows and from the highway they live on for a long time! We hope to someday get them to replace the rug with laminite or something that won't absorb the lead dust.

We've moved, so it's not so much an issue, but it really freaks me out when we go back to visit.



It really made me so mad, because I really tried to be aware of this issue. I can't tell you how many apts I looked at, etc trying to find one that was lead free only to have lead exposure anyway.

Has anyone else heard that lead exposure can come from keys?
post #433 of 624
I also haven't made it through the whole thread though I'll be coming back. As the mama of an older child I would urge all mamas to take any lead levels in the body very seriously- certainly anything above a 1 or 2! No lead in the body is normal. I became aware of this issues when we bought our first home and my oldest was 2 and I was pregnant with my second. We bought a house built in 1931. It was beautiful and we loved it. Prior to moving into this house my DS tested at a level 4 (we had to specifically request the results because under 10 is considered negative and you don't get notified). We did our own lead cleanup with TSP wet washing of walls and everything, got the house spot tested and retested and the lead levels went down to acceptable levels. We always used a hepa vac and TSP, wet wiped windows regularly, and washed hands a lot. We got kids retested and tests always came back negative. I think we checked the numbers again and it hovered around a 4. I knew no lead in the body is normal, but I figured we were doing the best we could and lots of kids had levels of 4. I comforted myself with the justification that newer houses probably have potent yet to be discovered toxins.

Fast forward- My oldest DS is verbally gifted but also has a learning disability and behavioral attention and impulse control problems. There is definitely a neurological basis. There's no way to know how much the lead had to do with it, but I often have trouble dealing with the fact that we knowingly bought and stayed in a house with lead basically because we loved it. We took lots of precautions, but in hindsight I'm really not sure it was worth the risk.

I am taking him to a doc who may want to do chelation treatment (we're awaiting current test results). I'm scared of the decisions I may be facing! I would be really interested in any links that really go into the pros and cons of chelation therapy under the supervision of a doctor. I would love to get this crap out of his body, but... is it worth yet another risk?
post #434 of 624
the dept of health came in last friday and told us our whole house is full of lead. we have to move, no resources to do so, trying to find help from every agency/organization i can get on the phone, no luck yet. our area is full of houses that are poisoning kids and there is not one agency set up to help families in this situation. will type more later if this one posts, as i have typed a longer post twice only to be told i am not logged in, and i am.
post #435 of 624
Quote:
Originally Posted by sandygirl View Post
I'm here to join in too - DD's pedi just called and her results were 15 {normal is .9 or under}. DD is 13mo.

I'm wracking my brain trying to figure out where is could be coming from. Anything china just went out the door {she had had some of the recalled toys} but other than that - house build in 1978 & new coat of paint 3yrs ago before we moved in. We haven't done any remodeling other than pulling up carpets.

How do you test the water???? Our city water sucks and tastes horrible.
The retest results are in - 17 with a vein draw. :

DD's pedi isn't doing anything about it either "we'll just watch it" - she is convinced that it was toys from china.

So - what can I do myself to help it go down?
post #436 of 624
hey mamas - quick question:

I just got a letter from the local health dept, informing me of DD's levels {but not her retest levels}. They want me to call for "nurse consultation & education"

What happens if I don't call? I'm a single mama FYI.

I don't really want them involved {coming to home to test, us having to go to Health Dept, etc} because I don't feel there is any need for it {we are fairly certain her high levels came from her toys}.
post #437 of 624
Sandygirl - please accept the help from the health department. They may be able to identify a source of lead you aren't aware of. You simply can't be certain the problem is entirely due to toys. You do not want to miss out on an opportunity to eliminate an exposure source. Please also accept their offer of counseling and education. It's great that you are coming here for tips, but again, why turn your back on another information source? You may also learn information about lead exposures and your legal rights that are specific to your area.

Harmonymama - it sounds like you don't have a current lead level for your DS. Even if his current lead level continued to be 4, chelation is not warranted at that level. No legitimate doctor is going to prescribe DMSA for a 4. Not worth the risk.

Dinahx - Yes, household keys are definitely a source of lead exposure. No one should let their children play with their keys, and if you can, wash your hands immediately after handling keys when you come into the house.
post #438 of 624
Quote:
Originally Posted by BrklynMama View Post
Sandygirl - please accept the help from the health department. They may be able to identify a source of lead you aren't aware of. You simply can't be certain the problem is entirely due to toys. You do not want to miss out on an opportunity to eliminate an exposure source. Please also accept their offer of counseling and education. It's great that you are coming here for tips, but again, why turn your back on another information source? You may also learn information about lead exposures and your legal rights that are specific to your area.
I swhould have clarified - my HD doesn't come out and do testing unless the level is over 20 - but I would be required to go to "Classes" since DD's is 18. The classes are a farce from what I've been told.
post #439 of 624
Quote:
Originally Posted by dinahx View Post
Has anyone else heard that lead exposure can come from keys?
Yes, I've heard that. From the metal fragments, I guess.
post #440 of 624
Quote:
Originally Posted by sandygirl View Post
The retest results are in - 17 with a vein draw. :

DD's pedi isn't doing anything about it either "we'll just watch it" - she is convinced that it was toys from china.

So - what can I do myself to help it go down?
Make sure she gets lots of calcium, iron and vitamin C in her diet. Also I believe good fats (like cod liver oil) are essential.

Harmonymama, Is your doc a DAN! dr?
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