Lead poisoning is a serious condition that can cause significant, long-term medical problems for children. According to this article in U.S. News and World Report, lead poisoning has been linked to developmental problems and lower IQ in some children because it can permanently damage developing brain cells.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) announced last month that it was lowering the thresholds for lead poisoning in children from 10 micrograms of lead per deciliter of blood to 5 micrograms.
Health advocates have lauded the CDC’s decision, saying that the prior guidelines gave parents and doctors a false sense of security that children were free from harm.
In the U.S. News and World Report article, Ruth Ann Norton, executive director of the Coalition to End Childhood Lead Poisoning, said “We are delighted that we have finally moved forward. It’s long overdue. This is science that’s been out there.”
The lower threshold for lead poisoning means that as many as 1 million children could be diagnosed with lead poisoning – a significant increase from the current 250,000, according to Dr. John Rosen, a professor of pediatrics and head of the division of environmental sciences at the Children’s Hospital at Montefiore Medical Center in New York City.
Lead was banned from house paints in 1978, but lead-based paint can still be found in deteriorating homes, as well some art supplies and imported toys, old painted toys, household pipes and faucets, certain hobby equipment and miniature lead figures. Lead can enter a child’s body through contact with the items followed by the child putting his or her fingers in the mouth or when an item contain lead is swallowed by the child.
The health risks and development problems associated with lead poisoning are irreversible. Lead poisoning has been shown to affect memory, learning, the ability to sit and listen in school, abstract thinking, planning, organization, communication skills, and fine motor skills.
The Chicago premises liability and product liability lawyers at Ankin Law Offices, LLC are committed to child safety and protecting the rights of victims of product liability and premises liability. If your child has been come in contact with lead through a dangerous or defective product or through unsafe housing, contact one of our skilled Chicago personal injury attorneys at (312) 600-0000 for a free consultation to discuss a possible produce liability or premises liability lawsuit.