Lead-Induced Chronic Kidney Disease

Heavy metals are chemical elements that have a relatively high density and is toxic or poisonous at low concentrations. Examples of heavy metals include mercury (Hg), cadmium (Cd), arsenic (As), chromium (Cr), thallium (Tl), and lead (Pb).
Heavy metals are dangerous because they tend to bioaccumulate in your body. Compounds accumulate in living things any time they are taken up and stored faster than they are broken down (metabolized) or excreted.

Your kidneys are specifically designed by Mother Nature to rid your body of toxins.

Lead and its related components remain widely distributed in the environment and in some workplaces. Think of paint, old water mains and even food, cosmetics, and some folk medicine. For many years adverse human health effects have been recognized after heavy lead exposure. Only recently more subtle human effects have been suggested invoking nervous system, reproductive and kidney function. Chronic low level environmental lead exposure may subtly effect kidney function[1].

Scientists always want proof of cause and effect and therefore adult rats were subjected to exposure to lead to assess the effects of that lead administration on the kidney and testicular structure. They were killed 48 hours following lead administration. Yes, that's sad, but it was done in the name of science. Scientists found a negative effect of lead on the structure and function of kidney and testes[2].
Smoking seems to be one of the key factors responsible for high concentrations of lead in the kidneys. Furthermore, blood lead levels were 14% and 24% higher in children who lived with one or with two or more smokers, respectively, than they were in children living with no smokers[3].

We propose to call this Chronic Kidney Disease of non-Traditional causes (CKDnT): Lead-Induced Chronic Kidney Disease.

[1] Bernard, Becker: Environmental lead exposure and the kidney in Journal of toxicology. Clinical toxicology – 1988
[2] Massanyi et al: Lead-induced alterations in rat kidneys and testes in vivo in Journal of Environmental Science and Health - 2007
[3] Apostolou et al: Secondhand Tobacco Smoke: A Source of Lead Exposure in US Children and Adolescents in American Journal of Public Health - 2012

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