According to a new study, lead levels in drinking water allowed by the Environmental Protection Agency have detrimental effects on health in people with kidney disease. The findings appear in an upcoming issue of JASN.
Despite advances in reducing the amount of lead in drinking water, low levels of pollution continue to spread across the United States. This can be especially dangerous for the 30-40 million Americans who live with it chronic kidney disease, which have increased susceptibility to the toxic effects of lead.
Researchers analyzed to examine the effects of low levels of lead pollution on people with advanced kidney disease health information for 597,968 patients who began dialysis in the United States between 2005 and 2017. The team also assessed lead concentrations in community water systems over the five-year period prior to the start of dialysis, based on -is in city-level data of information on safe drinking water from the Environmental Protection Agency System.
People living in cities with detectable levels of lead in community water had significantly lower hemoglobin concentrations before starting dialysis and during the first month of dialysis therapy. They were also prescribed higher doses of medications to treat anemia, which occurs when red blood cell counts or hemoglobin levels are lower than normal. These associations were observed at lead levels below the Environmental Protection Agency’s threshold (0.015 mg / L) which requires regulatory action.
The findings suggest that for patients with poor kidney function, there is no safe amount of lead in drinking water. “While drinking water may appear uniformly healthy, the low levels of lead contamination found in most drinking water systems in the United States can have toxic effects for those with chronic kidney disease,” he said. lead author John Danziger, MD, MPhil, of Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center. “More rigorous efforts may be needed to improve water system infrastructure to protect individuals from unrecognized dangers.”
Importantly, the study also revealed inequalities, with higher water lead levels observed for blacks compared to white patients. “Combined with increased susceptibility to kidney disease among blacks, this represents a major environmental injustice, ”Dr. Danziger said.
“Associations of lead concentrations in drinking water with hemoglobin concentrations and use of erythropoietin stimulating agents among patients with advanced chronic kidney disease.” JASN DOI: 10.1681 / ASN.2020091281
American Society of Nephrology
Citation: For people with kidney disease, there is no safe amount of lead in drinking water (2021, July 15) recovered on July 15, 2021 at https://medicalxpress.com/news/2021-07 -people-kidney-disease-safe- quantity.html
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