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Moms dealing with elevated lead levels - Page 29

post #561 of 624
Oh, that sick stomach feeling, waiting for the lead test. You don't have to hope your breastmilk is protective. There are plenty of clinical studies that prove it. The small meals throughout the day leave Ca in the baby's stomach to bind with the lead s/he ingests, plus the baby's usually superior Fe and Ca status supply more of those to bind with any lead that gets past the stomach.
post #562 of 624
Thank you Stacy and Provocativa,

I have good news to report- the test came back within normal range so I am sooo thankful!!!!!My husband and I started crying in the car when we found out. We are thinking about moving...we don't want to be thinking and worrying about lead chips, etc....We'll see.

I had to undergone chelation on and off for a year when we did construction to our house and got lead poisoning myself! It is a stressful and scary process (and more so when it involves your children).

Thank you so much for your replies and support during these last couple of days and I wish you all the best and wishes for low lead levels for your babes/kids.
post #563 of 624
How can I test my son or myself for lead? I have an order for his blood work with several boxes checked, but none of them says LEAD. WHat should it say? I'd mark it myself.

Also, what are the symptoms of lead poisoning?
Thank you!
post #564 of 624
Ask your doctor--your paperwork might be in codes if there are a lot of tests on there.

Symptoms of lead poisoning are easy to find with a google search. Here's the first hit that came up for me:
http://children.webmd.com/tc/lead-poisoning-symptoms

PLEASE be aware, though, that not all lead poisoning is symptomatic. My daughter had a lead level of 47, which is very high and required immediate hospitalization. Yet, she didn't show any symptoms.

Here's a chart of lead levels and their interventions:
http://lead-info.com/levelschart.html
post #565 of 624
Bumping this..just got the call from DS Ped saying that his finger prick level is 15.9
his iron was 'normal' though not sure the range or level
we are off to the Children's Hospital to do the blood draw, as she says she can not rely on the finger prick to be accurate..

*BTW, I pushed to get his iron and lead levels tested because he has a speech delay at (21 months old) I saw his Ped at 16 months and pushed for the tests then, finally 2 weeks ago he was tested...needless to say I'm FIRING his Ped!
Please get your babies tested and NEVER ignore or quiet your inner mama gut
post #566 of 624
Totally agree. I always say that I'm the lead testing poster mom. I tell everyone about Lu's lead poisoning, because I want them to get their kids tested!

I hope everything works out well with your DS.
post #567 of 624
WHich is a way to get a little one tested for lead other than blood draw. We went for a blood draw for ferritin, iron, D, folic, B12 and then she showed me that for lead testing (which I ordered myself) it will have to be another HUGE tube even bigger than those two two she already drew. So I told her 'next time', and wrote you to see what are ways to check for lead are. I read above that finger pricking? How come they never offered it to us at the ped?
post #568 of 624
Can i buy a test kit for home testing?
post #569 of 624
Quote:
Originally Posted by trus View Post
WHich is a way to get a little one tested for lead other than blood draw. We went for a blood draw for ferritin, iron, D, folic, B12 and then she showed me that for lead testing (which I ordered myself) it will have to be another HUGE tube even bigger than those two two she already drew. So I told her 'next time', and wrote you to see what are ways to check for lead are. I read above that finger pricking? How come they never offered it to us at the ped?
My ped does a routine heal prick, which will give you a level, though if it is elevated, you need a blood draw.
We just got DS tested today and it wasn't much blood at all, actually.
Not sure why you weren't offered it yet, depends on your LO age as well, my ped routinely checks at 12 months(she never offered the test to me, her excuse was we don't vax so the only time she sees DS is for a sickness or concern, I mean....she is a major )and 2 years old.
When did you get the iron tested, sometimes when the iron level is low they will test because your body will absorb the LEAD more if you a low on it.
Hope any of the helps
post #570 of 624
So ANY ped can do it by pricking a heel? We found out he is low on iron long time ago and were never offered a lead check. I'll call them and ask to come and get my son tested.

So if the levels are high, then they send you for a blood draw?
post #571 of 624
I think there are two reasons that some peds don't do heel or finger pricks. First, they're not as accurate as venous draws. Second, from what I've heard, they actually hurt more.
post #572 of 624
Quote:
Originally Posted by trus View Post
So ANY ped can do it by pricking a heel? We found out he is low on iron long time ago and were never offered a lead check. I'll call them and ask to come and get my son tested.

So if the levels are high, then they send you for a blood draw?
Yes, if the first screening(heel prick) is high, you need a blood draw

Quote:
Originally Posted by staceychev View Post
I think there are two reasons that some peds don't do heel or finger pricks. First, they're not as accurate as venous draws. Second, from what I've heard, they actually hurt more.
I think PP is asking why her ped hasn't done a lead screening yet.
As far as which hurts worse, my DS is non verbal so I can not ask him, but judging by how he reacted to both, the venous draw was more painful/upsetting
The CDC's pages about lead reveal that peds do the heel prick as a way to screen every patient more easily, then if the reading is high, a blood draw. Maybe it makes it easier(cheaper) that way?


ETA: I'm just thinking about stepping on glass on my foot and man that does hurt a lot, but if you get a bad blood draw(my veins always 'roll') it can be much more painful...apparently DS veins roll as well so he might not be the best example of pain level..
post #573 of 624
Quote:
Originally Posted by razzberry414 View Post
[B]I think PP is asking why her ped hasn't done a lead screening yet.
Ah, gotcha. I mis-read.

You know, from what I've read with other mamas on this board/thread, it seems like the routine lead testing is more routine in certain parts of the country than others. Maybe it has to do with how old the housing stock is?

Anyway, hope your heel feels better! Yikes!
post #574 of 624
Thank you!
post #575 of 624
Just wanted to update: the blood draw puts DS level at 7.5, though not as high as we all feared, it is still elevated, just not enough for our state to worry about us...
We are implementing a MIC toy removal(don't have too much, just mainly Melissa and Doug)
We already are a no shoe house but my parents across the street aren't, DS spends about 50% of the time there, so now no shoes there also.
If when his food allergy test comes back that he isn't reactive to dairy, we will be adding that in to help with Calcium.
As well as washing hands when we come inside and before eating, this just is not a habit for us yet.
Retesting in 3 months to make sure it is going down...
Hope everyone is having good luck with their babies, I feel I am now a crazed LEAD FREE spokesperson. Hey, maybe I'm on to a new career path!
With mainly old houses in New Orleans, it's a big concern.
post #576 of 624

How do you feel safe in your house again?

Sorry, I'm not sure where to post this. But I suspect that more than a few of you have been where I am at. We have a beautiful, 1930 brick house with lead and asbestos, same as most houses of that era. Finding more out as I went along, I'm rather to the point of being petrified by fear over the icky stuff in old houses. I love old houses - there's so much more to them than most modern stuff and I realize that modern houses have their own icky factors - formaldehyde, etc, and really, most of the houses are old where we're at. I suppose that even if we found a pristine piece of land and built a "clean" house with materials believed to be safe now, that in 20+ years, many of those "safe" things would no longer be considered such.

If you have felt icky about being in your older house, esp after finding an elevated lead level in your kid(s), how do you get past it/deal with it? It is so hard because lead and asbestos dust are so dangerous, but they are invisible. Ugh.

Please, advice, a cleaning plan, anything to help find that ok place between paranoia and reasonable caution.
post #577 of 624
I totally understand where you're coming from, Bigteamug. When my DD tested at a level of 47, we were living with my mom in her 1960's suburban house after years of living in NYC (the lead wasn't from NYC). After ten years of being together, we had finally bought our first home, an adorable Victorian that my husband was remodeling as his second shift every night. We literally were a month away from moving in when we got our test results.

I was paralyzed. The lead was from my mom's house (almost positive), but leaving her place and going to our new home felt like jumping out of the frying pan into the fire. We briefly considered living with my dad, but decided on staying with my mom and putting off our move to our new house.

What helped? First of all, time. The day the doctor called to tell me to pack for the hospital, my heart just stopped. But, little by little, things got better. Lucy got her treatment and her levels came down quickly and steadily. The health department came to evaluate my mom's house and we're almost 100% on where she picked up the lead. We bought a vacuum that has a HEPA filter and started vacuuming and wet mopping constantly. We made sure to all wash our hands often, and added more Vit-C, calcium, and iron to our diets. All of this came from research: I got online and read a ton and learned all that I could.

DH learned, too, and we ended up staying with my mom 6 more months while he did things at our new house like take out old, lead covered molding (we lucked out and a friend in the neighborhood knew where to get matching new stuff milled). We've been in our house for 2-1/2 years and DD's levels are still good.

Speaking of levels, get your children tested. I'm assuming you're doing that, right?

Now the asbestos is another story. Where is it? Personally, I'd be much more nervous about asbestos, but that might be because it's "the devil I don't know." Can you get someone to come out and talk to you about abatement?

I know how you feel about old houses... I'm right there with you. But, you can make smart choices to make an old house safe and comfortable for your family. Being in an old house doesn't have to be a game of Russian roulette.

Good luck... sorry for the book I wrote there!
post #578 of 624
Stacey, thank you for the advice. I did have my girls screened at a free test, and they will be getting the venous draw, too - DD2, 2.5, came in at 4.4. Older daughter, 7 came in with low, which just means under 3.3 - that's as low as the machine will measure. BUT, the house we rented before we bought this one was older and had paint in MUCH worse shape, so I'm rather horrified that I waited so long to test - whatever she picked up there has probably already disappeared into her system - and then I wonder about the charm on a little purse that I caught DD2 chewing on when she was a baby. DD2 has always grown less the Dr liked, and I just am left wondering how much she was exposed prior to now, as poor growth and speech delays are symptoms. I know these are minor exposures compared to what many have dealt with, but we haven't even moved into the upstairs yet, where most of the issues will be.

As far as asbestos - the house had vermiculite, which we had removed (there were some issues with the removal, which I hope were all dealt with). But, like lead, asbestos abatement removes a lot of the issue, but doesn't eliminate it. Otherwise, we have some of the wrapped up pipes, some questionable ceiling tiles in the basement, and some other stuff, most of which appears to be sealed up well, aside from some textured ceilings. We will have the plaster and other stuff tested soon, too. Sadly, there is no easy way to check for asbestos exposure - maybe they could take a chunk of your lung, I suppose. And back then, it was used in so much stuff, like lead.

I guess what really freaked me out is that I had those tests done before we had work done. And I started to realize that old houses have history, it is hard to know what work was done before that may have contaminated things in terms of lead dust or asbestos. All it takes is one uneducated person, and poof! - you have an invisible issue.

It just adds to the whole old house money thing. And we just don't have money to move out while work is done. The guy will come out with the x-ray gun next week, and do dust wipes and soil tests - the city here has a grant, so that is free. Sadly, we are about $500 over the income limit to get help doing the lead abatement from the same grant.

I guess it is also hard that I have always struggled with housekeeping and now it is needful.

Sorry for my book, too, but info is good, and maybe someone down the line will get good info from the conversations.
post #579 of 624
I was told to look here because lead paint was found in my apartment. As soon as I moved in I requested a lead inspection. The inspector found lead paint in the door frame of our front door which is cracking and chipping in huge squares hanging off of the door frame but I see none on the door step.

My landlord keeps saying he will paint over it but never has. He is supposed to come tomorrow but now I am getting nervous that since he is not trained maybe he should not paint over it. As you all under stand it is making me sick and paranoid. In my mind everything is contaminated although I know it is not... my daughter LL was 3.3. Which is not shocking but still we had only lived here a month then. She is going to be retested next month.

So should I have him paint over this for now? It takes up to a year for the city to come in to fix it and until then I am freaking out. We have to walk through this doorway every day and I have everyone take off shoes before entering but I still wonder how much gets tracked in because the kids have to bring the shoes in the living room to put them on because the entryway is only a tiny space.

Our windows also contain lead on the outside and there are coal shoots also in violation. There is also chipping paint in the basement I am concerned about but won't know until next year when they come to fix everything.

I am so tired of stressing about this.

I am a single mom and I babysit two kids full time and I am constantly stressed about this lead paint stuff. I keep getting migraines and they are starting to make life difficult. I keep telling myself to relax that it is out of my hands but oy. I am sure you understand. They cannot fix this fast enough.

So... Do you think I should have him paint over it tomorrow? If so he says he "has some paint of the same color" he is just gonna slap over it. He was furious when I had the place inspected and is not happy with me at all. So getting him to spend money to temporarily fix it is not helping. Will any paint work temporarily? I keep googling but i am getting mixed answers. I can guarantee that he is not goingto run out and buy special paint for this.

I can only find special rules for scraping but none for painting over chips without scraping. I DO NOT want him scraping. I know that much.

My daughter is 11 months old, still breastfed, and now taking an iron supp. I am going to speak to her doctor next month about any further suggestions. She is a holistic family practitioner but this will be our first visit to her we fired our last doctor.

This is rambly. sorry. it is late and my daughter is sick so my brain is loopy.
post #580 of 624
to the mama in St. Louis who discovered lead in her apartment: do you know what, if any, regulations your city or state has for what the landlord's responsibility is when it comes to lead paint? In Maryland, landlords are required to pay for painting to be done by certified people wherever it is chipping, before a new tenant moves in and whenever a problem is found...but it can be difficult to enforce...if you are able to contact the city about this they might be able to tell you. I totally understand the stress factor. We moved into a new place when our daughter was tested two months ago and had a level of 4, but then found lots of chipping paint in the new place after we moved in. We've had lots of work done, but I don't know if it is enough, and feel constantly stressed and confused about how much to do, how often to clean etc.
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