Lead concentrations in maternal blood and breast milk and pediatric blood of Andean villagers: 2006 follow-up investigation.J Occup Environ Med. 2007 Mar; 49(3):302-9.JO
To determine the current lead (Pb) concentration in blood (PbB) and breast milk (PbM) of mothers and the PbB of children living in Andean Ecuadorian villages with high Pb contamination.
Samples of whole blood from 93 participants (74 children and 19 adult women) were analyzed for Pb concentration by graphite furnace atomic absorption spectroscopy with Zeeman background correction, and milk samples from nursing mothers were analyzed by inductively coupled plasma-mass spectrometry (ICP-MS).
Mean PbB concentration in children in 2006 was 26.7 microg/dL (SD: 23.0), and significantly lower than the mean PbB level in 1996 to 2000, but similar to the PbB level found in 2003. The mean PbB level of 22.0 microg/dL (SD: 20.6) for the 19 women in the 2006 study group did not differ significantly from the women in the 1996 to 2000 or 2003 study group. The PbM levels (range: 1-49 microg/L) of nursing mothers in the 2006 group were similar to the PbM values observed in the breast milk of nursing mothers in the same study area in 2003, and matched high PbB levels in some mother-infant pairs.
This study found elevated, but stable, PbB and PbM levels in mothers and elevated, but stable, PbB levels in children in 2006 that were consistent with the levels observed in 2003 in the same Andean villages.