"Moms' Lead Exposure Could Affect Newborns' Brains"

"Pregnant women exposed to lead had newborns who scored slightly lower on tests measuring reflexes and other skills tied to brain development, according to a new study from China.

Scientists already have documented that low levels of lead can reduce children’s IQs and cause other neurological effects. But the new study is one of few to find that babies in the womb also could be affected, especially if exposed during the first trimester.

“These findings support the idea that the time to intervene to protect kids from the toxic effects of lead may be before pregnancy,” said Dr. Bruce Lanphear, a Simon Fraser University epidemiologist who is a leading expert on health effects of lead. He was not involved in the new study."

Lindsey Konkel reports for Environmental Health News June 4, 2014.

Thursday, June 5, 2014