The Effect of Maternally-Mediated Exposure to Lead on Pregnancy Outcome.
NIOSH 1991 Dec:27 pages
This study reviewed the results of earlier epidemiological studies on the hazards of lead (7439921) exposure to the unborn infant. The findings of animal studies were also reviewed. The results of the review provided evidence concerning pregnancy outcomes following lead exposure. The findings supported small reductions in the length of gestation but no consistent effect on fetal growth or birthweight. The dose/response effect, regarding length of gestation, seems to suggest that some reduction was found in gestation periods in groups with relatively low blood lead levels. However, even with this slight increase in preterm delivery, it did not appear that lead exposure was related to decreased fetal growth or birthweight, with the possible exception of high level exposures over 15 micrograms/deciliter. Since birthweight predicts early infant cognitive development, control for this factor may increase the precision of the effect estimate between lead exposure and infant development. The studies reviewed suggested an association between environmental lead exposure and preterm delivery. However, more data, with standardized measures of both length of gestation and exposure, are needed to adequately determine the shape of the dose/response curve.
NIOSH-Contract; Transplacental-exposure; Reproductive-hazards; Developmental-disorders; Lead-poisoning; Neonates; Laboratory-animals; Humans; Nervous-system-disorders; Brain-function;
NTIS Accession No.
School of Public Health, Division of Epidemiology, Columbia University, New York, New York, NIOSH Purchase Order Report 91-39371, 27 pages, 60 references