Eliminating childhood lead toxicity in Australia: a call to lower the intervention level

Ian H Wilson and Simon B Wilson
Med J Aust 2013; 199 (5): . || doi: 10.5694/mja12.11803
Published online: 2 September 2013

To the Editor: Taylor and colleagues1 suggest lowering the National Health and Medical Research Council intervention level for blood lead level (BLL) because two reports indicate that health effects occur at lower BLLs.2,3 Such action may be unwarranted as these effects could be artefacts of suspect methodology that was missed by peer reviewers.

  • 1 Sustainable Resource Sciences, Brisbane, QLD.
  • 2 Prince Charles Hospital, Brisbane, QLD.


Competing interests:

No relevant disclosures.

  • 1. Taylor MP, Winder C, Lanphear BP. Eliminating childhood lead toxicity in Australia: a call to lower the intervention level [letter]. Med J Aust 2012; 197: 493. <MJA full text>
  • 2. National Toxicological Program. NTP monograph on health effects of low-level lead. Washington, DC: US Department of Health and Human Services, 2012. (accessed Dec 2012).
  • 3. Lanphear BP, Hornung R, Khoury J, et al. Low-level environmental lead exposure and children’s intellectual function: an international pooled analysis. Environ Health Perspect 2005; 113: 894-899.
  • 4. Factor-Litvak P, Wasserman G, Kline JK, Graziano J. The Yugoslavia Prospective Study of Environmental Lead Exposure. Environ Health Perspect 1999; 107: 9-15.
  • 5. Bellinger D, Leviton A, Waternaux C, et al. Longitudinal analyses of prenatal and postnatal lead exposure and early cognitive development. N Engl J Med 1987; 316: 1037-1043.


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