What Parents Need to Know about Lead Poisoning

December 1, 2007 12:00:00 AM PST
Parents are being warned to double check their child's wish list because of toys tainted with lead.One family cherishes every special moment after being through so much.

"He's the epitome of strenght and courage," said Lisa and Rob Breakiron, parents.

Problems for their son Noah began at 9 months old.

He was often sick and out of control.

"We couldn't go to the grocery store, church, really anything just due to the screaming."

Noah was diagnosed with autism but then the underlying problem was discovered. Noah had lead poisoning. He had 7 times the upper limit of lead in his body.

"We were shocked. We were absolutely shocked. We were like, lead poisoning, that can't be right."

They couldn't pinpoint how the lead got into Noah's body, but his parents believe it might have been from Noah's toys.

"I can tell you as a toddler, just like any other kid, always chewing on stuff."

Keylation treatments have reduced Noah's lead levels and have made a huge impact.

"It was really powerful. It was amazing to watch it. It was literally like watching a miracle right in front of our eyes."

Pediatrician David Berger is Noah's doctor.

"We have a child here who is virtually indistinguishable from his peers and that's certainly not where he was a year, two years ago," said Dr. David Berger.

Dr. Berger says a developing brain is much more sensitive to lead exposure. He says universal testing for kids should be done.

It's a blood test doctors stopped doing routinely 10 years ago.

But one he says parents should ask for.

"This can cause significant long-term problems and that's worth checking for."

"With Noah's level of lead poisoning, if that were to continue, he could have died."

You can't tell that Noah's body is in a battle to remove the lead. He just seems like a typical four year old, and that's good news.

In October alone, there were 27-million lead related recalls of toys and jewelry items for children.

Until new rules on lead paint are in place, many toy companies are avoiding imported parts.

They say parents may want to avoid parts from China, although the Chinese government is now being extra cautious about toy parts made there.


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