Stephen J.LurieMD, PhD, Contributing EditorIndividualAuthor
To the Editor: Blood lead levels as low as
0.43 µmol/L (10 µg/dL) in children can result in developmental
and behavioral problems, including lower intelligence.1
For this reason, lead has been restricted in paint and banned in gasoline
and vinyl miniblinds in the United States. However, most physicians are probably
unaware that household candlewicks may still include lead as a stiffener.
In 1974, the candle industry agreed with the Consumer Product Safety Commission
(CPSC) to voluntarily stop making candles with lead-containing wicks. In February
2000, we conducted a systematic survey to determine the prevalence of such
candles. We also estimated atmospheric lead levels produced by burning lead
Fontanarosa PB, Sobel HL, Lurie P, Wolfe SM. Lead Exposure From Candles. JAMA. 2000;284(2):180–181. doi:10.1001/jama.284.2.175
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