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British children at risk from 'lead pollution'

17th September 2009

Environmental lead pollution remains a health hazard, particularly for children, scientists claim.

A study entitled Children of the 90s measured the levels of lead among 500 youngsters at the age of two years and eight months.

Scientists from the University of Bristol found a clear link between the levels of lead in the bloodstream and the results of Sats exams taken at the age of seven.

Commenting on the study, which is published in the journal Archives of Diseases in Childhood, head of the Centre for Child and Adolescent Health Professor Alan Emond explained that those with lead levels above 5mg/dl performed worse in exams.

He added: 'We also talked to teachers as part of this research and found that children with lead levels above 10mg/dl were nearly three-times as likely to show hyperactivity and anti-social behaviour.'

Symptoms of lead poisoning vary according to the quantity and type of substance ingested, but can include abdominal pain, fever, chills and drowsiness.

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