Environmental Exposure to Lead and Cognitive Deficits in Children

James D. Sargent, Alan Meyers, Michael Weitzman, David Bellinger, Jone Sloman, Alan Leviton, Christine Waternaux, Herbert L. Needleman, Michael Rabinowitz, Anthony J. Mcmichael, Peter A. Baghurst, Neil R. Wigg, Graham V. Vimpani, Evelyn F. Robertson, Russell J. Roberts

Research output: Contribution to journalLetterpeer-review


To the Editor: In their August 25 article, McMichael et al.1 present data that corroborate several studies linking increased blood lead levels to cognitive deficits in children one to four years old. The authors take great care to show that this effect persists after control for 16 confounding variables, ranging from demographic to perinatal data. However, they fail to control for a variable that is related to blood lead levels, is more prevalent in lower socioeconomic groups,2 and has been shown to affect children's mental development — iron deficiency. Iron deficiency is intimately associated with plumbism, and is seen in…

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)595-596
Number of pages2
JournalNew England Journal of Medicine
Issue number9
StatePublished - Mar 2 1989

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Medicine


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