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Did you decline 12 month bloodwork? - Page 5

post #81 of 160
Huggerwocky, of course there are relevant studies. Why don't you start here:

http://pediatrics.aappublications.or...ull/116/4/1036

You asked why we don't test for mercury, then. The reason is that the risks and sources of lead exposure are far more thoroughly researched and understood. EPA limits on mercury exposure are based on a couple of particular instances of mercury poisoning, whereas we have long-term data on the relationship of lead exposure at various levels to cognitive deficits. I could compare lead exposure and mercury exposure further, but I don't wish to get diverted into a conversation about vaccinations, amalgam fillings, etc. Perhaps down the road we will have more data on mercury exposure - certainly we will if the activists have their way - and recommendations will shift accordingly, but for now I'm glad that my daughter's health wasn't further jeopardized by lead exposure simply because I wasn't able to do a mercury test at the same time.

Further, on whether it's a "painful and invasive" procedure. Frankly, there should be very little pain to a blood draw if the practitioner is skilled. I understand that a few people have had dreadful experiences. I don't believe this is the norm. In addition, I believe it would be far more painful to have a brain-damaged child.
post #82 of 160
Quote:
Originally Posted by orangefoot View Post
I am and just at the title of this thread.

There is no such thing is this country. Lead solder, let alone lead pipework has been illegal here for use with drinking water supplies for over 15 years.

Surely it would be simpler to test your drinking water supply for contamination than draw blood from every 12 month old in the country? Or would insurers not pay for that? /irony/sarcasm call it what you will
Well...lead pipes are the least of it, pipes aren't made of lead in the states these days, either. There's lead paint, and cars emit tons of lead and more and more. You're not saying there is no lead poisoning int he UK, are you?

As for insurance, if you get WIC, say, they 'require' lead tests. Lead tests are free for children most places, and kids on welfare, fi, get lead tests as part of the WIC/Food stamp programs. Also, I am pretty sure that if you live in public housing, children are lead tested.

Oh, and say you live in an apartment, and your child comes up postive for lead... you can sue the pants off the landlord. In MA, it is required by law that landlords remove lead paint if a child is found with elevated lead levels. It's one reason some people don't like to rent to families with little kids. (Not that they can legally say they aren't renting because the family has kids).
post #83 of 160
Some links about lead testing in the UK. There is a 2004 BBC article in there as well about identifying lead posioning better.

http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&q...sting+UK+child

And you are spot on about UK not lead testing kids--

http://www.childalert.co.uk/absolute...d=193&zoneid=3
post #84 of 160
Quote:
Originally Posted by the_lissa View Post
My child had blood drawn for health reasons, and it was the single most horrific experience of her or my life.
That's truly awful; your poor baby. I also had a terrible experience with my first blood draw, I was more like 8 years old, and I had a issue with needles for years.

I can understand why it aggravates you to hear people say that a blood draw is not a big deal. At the same time, my daughter's experience was the complete opposite; she sat in my lap and did not make a sound or flinch when they did the draw. So it bugs me when people call the procedure, by definition, traumatizing for a child. It can be but it certainly also can not be.
post #85 of 160
Quote:
Originally Posted by orangefoot View Post

Surely it would be simpler to test your drinking water supply for contamination than draw blood from every 12 month old in the country?
If only it were so easy. There are so many sources for lead exposure that it is not at all a simple matter to test or even completely control the environment in which kids live. There are several posters here who have children adversly affected by lead who have never been able to determine the source, even retrospectively.
post #86 of 160
Quote:
Originally Posted by UUMom View Post
So basically, if you think your baby may have been exposed to lead in an apartment, you might test. If you know she hasn't , you wouldn't.
This is misleading, and plays into the poor, inner-city lead poisoning stereotype. Once again, Lucy was exposed while living in my mom's very clean, 1960's-era suburban home. Lead paint was phased out in 1978, but I'm convinced that it was used for at least a few years after that due to cans sitting around. And it's still used in things like vinyl mini-blinds (and sadly, products from other countries...)
post #87 of 160
Quote:
Originally Posted by staceychev View Post
This is misleading, and plays into the poor, inner-city lead poisoning stereotype. Once again, Lucy was exposed while living in my mom's very clean, 1960's-era suburban home. Lead paint was phased out in 1978, but I'm convinced that it was used for at least a few years after that due to cans sitting around. And it's still used in things like vinyl mini-blinds (and sadly, products from other countries...)
I agree with you 10,000 %. I was just trying to give the doubters a way out.
post #88 of 160
Quote:
Originally Posted by UUMom View Post
I agree with you 10,000 %. I was just trying to give the doubters a way out.
Thanks. I think that this thread definitely struck a nerve!
post #89 of 160
I do understand that lead poisoning in children is a serious problem, & have considered requesting that my own children be tested because we live in an old house where I know there is lead-based paint under the newer paint. However, I do feel that we took recommended precautions to stop their exposure to lead, & based on those choices, I haven't requested the blood test.

Honestly, it was the age of the child + the two vials of blood, & the routine mentality from some posters that gave me pause. To the OP, do you think your child is at risk? Or is just your pediatrician who thinks your child is at risk? You have weigh the possible outcomes & your circumstances & decide accordingly, yk?

Quote:
Originally Posted by UUMom
As for insurance, if you get WIC, say, they 'require' lead tests. Lead tests are free for children most places, and kids on welfare, fi, get lead tests as part of the WIC/Food stamp programs. Also, I am pretty sure that if you live in public housing, children are lead tested.
See now, that kinda freaks me out, if only because vaccines are free here in Australia (indeed, the gov't will pay you money if you vax on schedule- at least they used to a few years ago) & that still doesn't make it a good thing. Not saying lead tests for some inner-city littlies is a bad thing, it's just the free mandate part that has me concerned. Do you know if you have to have a child blood test done before you can receive public assistance in the US? Because that, to me, would be really really freaky.....



Also, maybe it's just me, but I'm kinda getting a vibe from this thread that mamas who don't have routine infant lead testing done in their home countries (unlike the US, apparently) are ignorant of the issues or are somewhat behind the times when it comes to child health. If that is the case, I do strongly resent that. WHat happens in the US is not best for the rest of the world.

Australia has high blood lead levels in children in some places like Mount Isa. It is a small town that has many mines near the town centre, & some of those produce lead as a by-product. Some of the children in that town have high blood lead levels. So we are not ignorant of the issue, or uncautious. Pragmatic in problem solving, however, I would accept & it is a problem that is being dealt with. Personally I could never, ever live in Mount Isa- for lots of reasons.

...............................


And finger pricks are horrid, imo. I used to have one twice a week when I went to Ohio University & sold my plasma for...... beer money. Had to have the finger prick first each time, & I hated it more than the needle in my arm. Fwiw.
post #90 of 160
Quote:
Originally Posted by UUMom View Post
A lead test is a finger prick and yes it hurts, but it's not a blood draw.
Actually, the blood draw is far more accurate and the reason my daughter's pediatrician only offers a blood draw for lead testing. I think this probably varies based on region and doctor.
post #91 of 160
Quote:
Originally Posted by riverscout View Post
Actually, the blood draw is far more accurate and the reason my daughter's pediatrician only offers a blood draw for lead testing. I think this probably varies based on region and doctor.
Ah, interesting.
post #92 of 160
Quote:
Originally Posted by aussiemum View Post
Also, maybe it's just me, but I'm kinda getting a vibe from this thread that mamas who don't have routine infant lead testing done in their home countries (unlike the US, apparently) are ignorant of the issues or are somewhat behind the times when it comes to child health. If that is the case, I do strongly resent that. WHat happens in the US is not best for the rest of the world.
That's funny, because I'm kind of getting the vibe from this thread that those of us who have chosen to have our children tested for lead levels are any of the following (and I'm not picking on you, specifically, aussiemum, since you didn't say all these things; it's a general impression from the thread):

1. alarmists
2. subjecting our children to "unnecessary" pain or medical intervention unless, of course, we are poor apartment dwellers (which I was at the time)
3. buying into some vast US conspiracy, the nature of which I'm not really clear on.

I also am not sure how "What happens in the US is not best for the rest of the world" in this case (again, not calling you out specifically). Did they not use lead paint or pipes in your country? Do they not have any toys that might have lead paint? Did they never use leaded gasoline that might have gotten into your soils? I would think the risks of lead exposure are probably similar in most industrialized countries.

For people in the US who think it doesn't apply to their kids, ask the following: Do I know what was in the dirt that my kids have played in? Do I have friends or relatives with older homes? Does my kid ever play with toys, at my house or anyone else's that might have been tainted? Could I have touched a lead coated extension cord, or something with lead solder like a tiffany lamp and not washed my hands, thus maybe exposing my children to lead when I touched them or prepared their food?

I just think the chances of exposure are SO varied that you'd never know without testing.
post #93 of 160
Quote:
Originally Posted by aussiemum View Post
I do understand that lead poisoning in children is a serious problem, & have considered requesting that my own children be tested because we live in an old house where I know there is lead-based paint under the newer paint. However, I do feel that we took recommended precautions to stop their exposure to lead, & based on those choices, I haven't requested the blood test.

Honestly, it was the age of the child + the two vials of blood, & the routine mentality from some posters that gave me pause. To the OP, do you think your child is at risk? Or is just your pediatrician who thinks your child is at risk? You have weigh the possible outcomes & your circumstances & decide accordingly, yk?



See now, that kinda freaks me out, if only because vaccines are free here in Australia (indeed, the gov't will pay you money if you vax on schedule- at least they used to a few years ago) & that still doesn't make it a good thing. Not saying lead tests for some inner-city littlies is a bad thing, it's just the free mandate part that has me concerned. Do you know if you have to have a child blood test done before you can receive public assistance in the US? Because that, to me, would be really really freaky.....



Also, maybe it's just me, but I'm kinda getting a vibe from this thread that mamas who don't have routine infant lead testing done in their home countries (unlike the US, apparently) are ignorant of the issues or are somewhat behind the times when it comes to child health. If that is the case, I do strongly resent that. WHat happens in the US is not best for the rest of the world.

Australia has high blood lead levels in children in some places like Mount Isa. It is a small town that has many mines near the town centre, & some of those produce lead as a by-product. Some of the children in that town have high blood lead levels. So we are not ignorant of the issue, or uncautious. Pragmatic in problem solving, however, I would accept & it is a problem that is being dealt with. Personally I could never, ever live in Mount Isa- for lots of reasons.

...............................


And finger pricks are horrid, imo. I used to have one twice a week when I went to Ohio University & sold my plasma for...... beer money. Had to have the finger prick first each time, & I hated it more than the needle in my arm. Fwiw.
Many people refuse WIC because of the requirements.

It is a little freaky, but the net is cast wide to try and catch children before they succumb to brain damage, kidney problems etc. In industrialized countries, lead poisoning is a big health problem. And not just in humans.

If a country doesn't require lead testing for littles (Austrailia does) it might or might be of benefit, depending on the extent of lead posioning in that country. Offerring or not offerring blood tests doesn't mean there aren't lead problems in that country. And it doesn't mean there are. A few countries require it, but most do not. It doesn't look like there is a big race to test for lead in children the way the Aussies, Americans, or Germans etc do it.

If a parent doesn't do well baby checks or doesn't want to jump through the WIC hoop in the US, or believe lead testing is 'too routine', or whatever their reasoning, they can skip any and all tests, vax etc.

Some people prefer blood to be drawn from the arm, and some prefer finger pricks-- it's individual-- as most things are.

ETA another thought-- I just learned from this thread--that some blood draws are better than others, and give you more info. With this information, people who do choose to test might prefer the more reliable test, which might mean the two vials. I wouldn't put my child through something to not get the best information psosible. If one drop of blood is inconclusive, one might consider the alternative from the get go.
post #94 of 160
Quote:
Originally Posted by easy_goer View Post
That's truly awful; your poor baby. I also had a terrible experience with my first blood draw, I was more like 8 years old, and I had a issue with needles for years.

I can understand why it aggravates you to hear people say that a blood draw is not a big deal. At the same time, my daughter's experience was the complete opposite; she sat in my lap and did not make a sound or flinch when they did the draw. So it bugs me when people call the procedure, by definition, traumatizing for a child. It can be but it certainly also can not be.
Oh definitely.

I've heard people say the pku test is, by definition, traumatic, when both my babies nursed through it, so I can see both sides.

I feel the same as you aussie.
post #95 of 160
Oh and I forgot to add that if you have a finger prick test come back positive for lead, AFAIK, no mattter where you are or who your doctor is, it will be followed up with a blood draw to confrim and to get a more accurate result. So, opting for the finger prick does not necessarily mean no blood draw.

Also, my daughter had a finger prick done for anemia and it was horrific, much to my surprise. I thought it would be a piece of cake. I think the nurse we got wasn't the best person for that job. It took forever and was just awful. If had known what my daughter was going to go through with that, I either would have opted not to do it at all or chosen to go to a pediatric phlebotimist at the hospital for a blood draw.

All that to say, if you do decide to do the test, IMO it would be best just to cut to the chase and get the blood draw by a qualified tech.
post #96 of 160
Quote:
Originally Posted by UUMom View Post
That said, lead tests here in MA involve a quick prick on the finger, which was an absolute cake walk for even my hospital -savvy child.
We are in MA. All of my boys have the blood draw. The finger prick was HORRENDOUS, pinning them down screaming kind of terrible. But I still think it's important to do. I was talked into trying the finger prick versus the arm because it's "easier" for #2, but it was waaay worse as usual. With #3 I will refuse anything but an arm draw. With the finger (or heel as an infant) they had to reprick SEVERAL times and squeeze and squeeze for 20 minutes to get enough for the tests.
Go with the arm.
post #97 of 160
We didn't do it with #1, who had no ped from month 4 to month 16, but then we did it once we were seeing a PED again, and we did it on time with Ds #2. The results were fine, which I was happy to know. Both had arm draws as that's what my prctice does. I think I prefer it.

FWIW, DS #2 didn't even cry, he just watched them draw the blood, almost in shock. I was soooo surprised, as I used to freak out with them. Ds#1 cried durin it, but I think only because he was being held down, which he hates.
post #98 of 160
Honestly I haven't bothered to go to a doc appt since 6 or 9 months......but if I had I would have declined. If we lived in an old home I might have had lead testing done, but I had no concerns, so I would have declined it.
post #99 of 160
Quote:
Originally Posted by veganf View Post
We are in MA. All of my boys have the blood draw. The finger prick was HORRENDOUS, pinning them down screaming kind of terrible. But I still think it's important to do. I was talked into trying the finger prick versus the arm because it's "easier" for #2, but it was waaay worse as usual. With #3 I will refuse anything but an arm draw. With the finger (or heel as an infant) they had to reprick SEVERAL times and squeeze and squeeze for 20 minutes to get enough for the tests.
Go with the arm.
While my children have never had issues with the finger prick test, I would now skip it. I agree, go staight to the arm and get the best info possible from the beginning.
post #100 of 160
Quote:
Originally Posted by meisterfrau
I also am not sure how "What happens in the US is not best for the rest of the world" in this case (again, not calling you out specifically). Did they not use lead paint or pipes in your country? Do they not have any toys that might have lead paint? Did they never use leaded gasoline that might have gotten into your soils? I would think the risks of lead exposure are probably similar in most industrialized countries.
It's okay, you can call me out specifically. I'm just trying to work through this issue too, & as long as we can all remain respectful, it's cool with me.

Yes, of course we have all the lead based product issues that any country would have, but we do have a lower population density overall, so I think that would mitigate the lead levels that you would find in many places. Except, of course, in certain mining & urban areas, where the lead problem has been in the media recently.

In general I do not like the idea of mandatory blood testing being tied to qualifying for government based help. We are a country of 20 million people, so I would like to think that we can lift everybody up without coercion.

I know that I have posted opinions opposite to that stance in recent months regarding indigenous Australians, & I still stand by those opinions. I don't think indigenous children should be subject to mandatory blood tests, either. All children should, however, receive mandatory access to healthy food on a regular basis- it's a human right, imo. Access is the key issue there, imo.
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