Lead poisoning causes
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Editor-In-Chief: C. Michael Gibson, M.S., M.D. ; Associate Editor(s)-in-Chief: Aksiniya Stevasarova, M.D.
Common causes of lead poisoning include ingestion, inhalation and skin exposure to lead and lead particles.
- Life-threatening causes include conditions which may result in death or permanent disability within 24 hours if left untreated.
- Life-threatening causes of lead poisoning include ingestion of lead base paint by small children, eventually leading to seizures, unconsciousness, coma and even death.
Lead poisoning may be caused by:
- Occupational hazards
- In adults, occupational exposure is the main cause of lead poisoning.People can be exposed when working in facilities that produce a variety of lead-containing products; these include radiation shields, ammunition, certain surgical equipment, developing dental x-ray films prior to digital x-rays, fetal monitors, plumbing, circuit boards, jet engines, and ceramic glazes, lead miners and smelters, plumbers and fitters, auto mechanics, glass manufacturers, construction workers, battery manufacturers and recyclers, firing range instructors, and plastic manufacturers are at risk for lead exposure.   
- Ingestion of lead contaminated soil
- Tetraethyllead, which used to be added to automotive gasoline (and still is added to some aviation gasolines), contributed to soil contamination. Residual lead in soil contributes to lead exposure in urban areas.
- Ingestion of lead dust or chips from deteriorating lead-based paints.
- Lead compounds are very colorful and are used widely in paints,  and lead paint is a major route of lead exposure in children. A study conducted in 1998–2000 found that 38 million housing units in the US had lead-based paint, down from a 1990 estimate of 64 million. Deteriorating lead paint can produce dangerous lead levels in household dust and soil. Deteriorating lead paint and lead-containing household dust are the main causes of chronic lead poisoning. The lead breaks down into the dust and since children are more prone to crawling on the floor, it is easily ingested.
- Drinking tap water.
Less Common Causes
Less common causes of lead poisoning include exposure to metallic lead via:
- Lead poisoning is not caused by a mutation in any gene.
- On the other hand so far three polymorphic genes have been identified to be able to potentially influence the bioaccumulation and toxicokinetics of lead in humans. These genes are delta-aminolevulinic acid dehydratase (ALAD) gene, the hemochromatosis gene and the vitamin D receptor (VDR). Their relation to susceptibility especially to lead nephrotoxicity in high lead-exposed workers has been established.  
- Delta -aminolevulinic acid dehydratase (ALAD) plays an important role in lead poisoning, and polymorphisms in the ALAD gene might affect the symptoms the individual patients experience. 
Causes by Organ System
|Cardiovascular||No underlying causes|
|Chemical/Poisoning||No underlying causes|
|Dental||No underlying causes|
|Dermatologic||No underlying causes|
|Drug Side Effect||No underlying causes|
|Ear Nose Throat||No underlying causes|
|Endocrine||No underlying causes|
|Environmental||No underlying causes|
|Gastroenterologic||No underlying causes|
|Genetic||No underlying causes|
|Hematologic||No underlying causes|
|Iatrogenic||No underlying causes|
|Infectious Disease||No underlying causes|
|Musculoskeletal/Orthopedic||No underlying causes|
|Neurologic||No underlying causes|
|Nutritional/Metabolic||No underlying causes|
|Obstetric/Gynecologic||No underlying causes|
|Oncologic||No underlying causes|
|Ophthalmologic||No underlying causes|
|Overdose/Toxicity||No underlying causes|
|Psychiatric||No underlying causes|
|Pulmonary||No underlying causes|
|Renal/Electrolyte||No underlying causes|
|Rheumatology/Immunology/Allergy||No underlying causes|
|Sexual||No underlying causes|
|Trauma||No underlying causes|
|Urologic||No underlying causes|
|Miscellaneous||No underlying causes|
Causes in Alphabetical Order
- ↑ 2.0 2.1 Dart, Hurlbut, Boyer-Hassen (2004) p. 1424
- ↑ "Occupational health and safety – chemical exposure". www.sbu.se. Swedish Agency for Health Technology Assessment and Assessment of Social Services (SBU). 2017-03-28. Retrieved 2017-06-07.
- ↑ Henretig (2006) p. 1310
- ↑ Gilbert, SG; Weiss, B (2006). "A rationale for lowering the blood lead action level from 10 to 2 μg/dL". Neurotoxicology. 27 (5): 693–701. doi:10.1016/j.neuro.2006.06.008. PMC 2212280. PMID 16889836.
- ↑ 7.0 7.1 Jacobs, David E.; Clickner, Robert P.; Zhou, Joey Y.; Viet, Susan M.; Marker, David A.; Rogers, John W.; Zeldin, Darryl C.; Broene, Pamela; et al. (2002). "The prevalence of lead-based paint hazards in U.S. housing". Environmental Health Perspectives. 110 (10): A599–606. doi:10.1289/ehp.021100599. JSTOR 3455813. PMC 1241046. PMID 12361941.
- ↑ Dart, Hurlbut, Boyer-Hassen (2004) p. 1423
- ↑ "Lead in drinking water". Retrieved 2007-08-14.
- ↑ "Alum Wins Investigative Reporting Award with Post Team" (html). University of Maryland. February 25, 2005. Retrieved 2007-11-07.
- ↑ "HONORS", The Washington Post, February 23, 2005
- ↑ Wang A, Wang Q, Song Q, Xu J (2009). "[Study of ALAD and VDR gene polymorphisms associated with lead nephrotoxicity susceptibility]". Wei Sheng Yan Jiu. 38 (3): 326–9. PMID 19548578.
- ↑ Wu S, Yan C, Shen X (2004). "[Molecular genetic susceptibility to lead poisoning]". Wei Sheng Yan Jiu. 33 (2): 226–8, 232. PMID 15209014.
- ↑ Shaik AP, Jamil K (2008). "A study on the ALAD gene polymorphisms associated with lead exposure". Toxicol Ind Health. 24 (7): 501–6. doi:10.1177/0748233708095770. PMID 19028776.