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Article
May 1954

URINARY EXCRETION OF LEAD IN CHILDREN: Diagnostic Application

Author Affiliations

BOSTON
From the Department of Pediatrics, Harvard Medical School, and the Children's Medical Center (Dr. Byers and Dr. Maloof) and the Massachusetts Division of Occupational Hygiene (Margaret Cushman).

AMA Am J Dis Child. 1954;87(5):548-558. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1954.02050090536003
Abstract

CRITERIA validating a definite diagnosis of lead poisoning have never been completely agreed upon. The conclusions of Byers and Lord 1 that lead poisoning without acute encephalopathy may interfere with intellectual development in children have been challenged, since their diagnoses were based on clinical findings unsupported by chemical analyses of urine or paint. Since this publication, an attempt has been made to develop a satisfactory chemical method for the determination of lead in urine and to apply it to the establishment of the diagnosis of lead poisoning in children.

METHODS  Because of their obvious convenience, various analytic methods based on the striking color produced by the reaction between lead and dithizone were explored under the direction of the late Alfred Shohl. Methods based both on titration and on direct colorimetry were studied. Though they gave admirable quantitative data in aqueous solutions of mixtures of salts, with urine the results

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