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May 1971

Plasma Renin Activity in Chronic Plumbism: Effect of Treatment

Author Affiliations

From the departments of medicine and pharmacology and the Division of Nutrition, Vanderbilt University School of Medicine, Nashville, Tenn.

Arch Intern Med. 1971;127(5):919-923. doi:10.1001/archinte.1971.00310170127017

Plasma renin activity was found suppressed in two patients with chronic plumbism of different etiologies (moonshine ingestion and industrial poisoning). After long-term therapy with edetate disodium calcium (Ca-EDTA) administered intravenously to reduce the total body burden of lead, the plasma renin activity returned to normal. The evidence presented is compatible with the hypothesis that lead deposition in renal tissue impairs processes leading to renin production or release or both and that this abnormality may be corrected with edetate disodium calcium therapy. This is the first demonstration of an endocrinopathy apparently due to lead which can be reversed by chelation therapy.

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