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September 1986

Slow, Natural Reduction in Blood Lead Level After Chelation Therapy for Lead Poisoning in Childhood

Author Affiliations

From the Department of Pediatrics, Division of Nephrology, Northwestern University and Children's Memorial Hospital, Chicago (Drs Moel and Sachs), and Computer Information Center and User Services, Northern Illinois University, DeKalb (Dr Drayton).

Am J Dis Child. 1986;140(9):905-908. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1986.02140230075036

• Lead poisoning Is treated with chelating agents. We report the natural decline of blood lead (Pb-B) concentration after treatment(s) (1967 to 1972) In 74 patients whose maximal Pb-B level ranged from 100 to 471 μg/dL (4.83 to 22.73 μmol/L). These longitudinal data (range, nine to 17 years) disclose a predictable decrease in Pb-B levels after treatment that is independent of the maximal Pb-B level before therapy. The correlation between age in months and the logarithm of the Pb-B level was significant, and the equation defined by the regression line allows one to predict Pb-B levels at specific ages after chelation therapy. It is important to recognize the slow, natural decline of Pb-B levels after chelation therapy once the level is stable and below 70 μg/dL (3.38 μmol/L). Multiple repeated courses of calcium disodium edetate are unlikely to influence the natural decline of the Pb-B level in asymptomatic children.

(AJDC 1986;140:905-908)

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