Acute Elevation of Blood Lead Levels Within Hours of Ingestion of Large Quantities of Lead Shot
Department of Emergency Medicine, College of Pharmacy, University of New Mexico Health Sciences Center, Albuquerque 87131, USA. Clinical Toxicology
(Impact Factor: 3.67).
07/2000; 38(4). DOI: 10.1081/CLT-100100954
Background: Ingestion of elemental lead foreign bodies is felt to have a low risk of clinically significant lead absorption unless gastrointestinal pathology and/or prolonged transit time are present. We present a case of ingestion of a large quantity of small diameter lead shot accompanied by rapid elevation of blood lead levels. Case Report: A 5½-year-old previously healthy girl was found eating the pellets from an ankle weight. She vomited and complained of abdominal pain. In the emergency department, she had no complaints and normal vital signs. An abdominal X-ray showed thousands of small, round, metallic density objects in the stomach. Her white blood cell count was 14,700/mm3, and the hemoglobin, mean corpuscular volume, free erythrocyte protoporphyrin, zinc protoporphyrin, biochemistry panel 21, and urinalysis were normal. She had no prior lead level for comparison. Whole-bowel irrigation was begun and she passed over 11 stools with pellets as well as other foreign bodies (erasers, bead, etc.) in the first 24 hours. Pellets were still seen on X-ray the following day so she received a high-fiber diet and bisacodyl tablets 10 mg/d. On hospital day 2, her admission blood lead (drawn 13 hours after ingestion) was reported as 57 μg/dL (2.7 μm/L) and chelation was begun with oral 2,3-dimercaptosuccinic acid 10 mg/kg 3x/d for 5 days, then 2x/d for 14 days. Her peak measured lead level was 79 μg/dL approximately 36 hours after ingestion. She excreted 2273 μg lead in the urine during her first 24 hours of chelation. Her blood lead dropped to 14.3 μg/dL by the end of chelation. She did not develop any apparent signs of lead poisoning. Conclusion: Acute elevations of blood lead concentrations may occur rapidly after ingestion of multiple small elemental lead objects.
Available from: Maryann Mazer-Amirshahi
- "In order to identify the source of exposure, a careful environmental and occupational history should be obtained and the appropriate public health agencies should be involved. For acute oral lead exposures (such as ingestion of paint chips), gastrointestinal decontamination may be performed [1,62]. Chelation therapy involves the administration of a chelating agent that binds lead and forms a chelate that is subsequently excreted from the body. "
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ABSTRACT: Lead is a pervasive toxin that has been implicated in human poisonings throughout history. Exposure mitigation strategies in the United States and worldwide have led to a decline in symptomatic poisonings and population blood lead levels; however, lead remains a major health hazard. In this article, we review the history of lead toxicity, clinical manifestations ranging from subclinical and subtle features to life-threatening complications, and the subsequent public health interventions in the US. In addition, we explore common routes of lead exposure and the unique differences between the US and Iran. Although the US has made significant strides with regard to this public health issue, lead poisoning in both countries continues to be a health hazard in the adult and pediatric populations. It is also critical to consider natural disasters and reconstruction efforts as potential sources of lead contamination. In conclusion, we make recommendations that both the US and Iranian authorities can implement to eradicate lead as a public health hazard.
Available from: Charles Timchalk
- "The results suggest that Pb-acetate when administered by oral gavage is rapidly absorbed, since peak blood Pb concentrations were attained within 30 min to 1 h post-dosing. This rapid absorption in the rat following an oral gavage dose is consistent with the absorption (peak 2 h post-dosing) seen in a human that ingested 100 mg Pb-acetate on two separate occasions (Marcus, 1985), or following the clinically reported acute ingestion of elemental Pb objects (McKinney, 2000). Within the blood, Pb is rapidly partitioned between RBC and plasma with >95% of the blood Pb being associated with the RBC component. "
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ABSTRACT: Biological monitoring for lead (Pb) is usually based upon a determination of blood Pb concentration; however, saliva has been suggested as a non-invasive biological matrix for assessing exposure. To further evaluate the potential utility of saliva for biomonitoring, the disposition of Pb was evaluated in whole blood (WB), red blood cells (RBC), plasma, parotid gland, bone, and saliva following either a single oral dose of 100mg Pb-acetate/kg body weight in rats or approximately 1-week after 5 sequential daily oral gavage doses of 1, 10, or 100mg Pb-acetate/kg/day. Saliva volume, pH, total saliva protein, and alpha-amylase activity were also determined. At specified times post-dosing groups of animals were anesthetized and administered pilocarpine to induce salivation. Saliva was collected, the animals were humanely sacrificed, and tissue samples were likewise collected, weighed, and processed for Pb analysis. Following a single dose exposure to Pb-acetate, Pb was detectable in all samples by 30 min post-dosing. For both the single and repeated dose treatments the concentration of Pb was highest in WB and RBC relative to plasma and saliva. However, the Pb rapidly redistributed (within 5-days post-treatment) from the blood into the bone compartment based on the substantial decrease in WB and RBC Pb concentration, and the concurrent increase in bone Pb following repeated exposure at all dose levels. Although there is clear variability in the observed Pb concentrations in plasma and saliva, there was a reasonable correlation (r(2)=0.922) between the average Pb concentrations in these biological matrices, which was consistent with previous observations. The single oral dose of Pb-acetate resulted in a decrease in salivary pH which recovered by 24h post-dosing and a decrease in alpha-amylase enzyme activity which did recover within 5-days of ceasing exposure. It is currently unclear what impact these slight functional changes may or may not have on Pb salivary clearance rates. These results demonstrate a feasibility to rapidly detect Pb in saliva and suggest that saliva may correlate best with plasma Pb concentration.
Available from: unjbg.edu.pe
- "Using x-rays to identify the presence and approximate the location of these objects can help direct management of their removal with wholebowel irrigation     and endoscopy  . Prompt removal is crucial because elevated blood levels have been shown to occur within hours of ingesting lead pellets . Another situation in which plain radiography may prove useful is with body packers. "
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ABSTRACT: Numerous diagnostic tests may be useful to clinicians caring for poisoned patients. Clinicians should not order a broad range of tests indiscriminately,but rather thoughtfully consider appropriate tests. The results'of the tests should be reviewed in the context of the clinical scenario.
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