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Lead Poisoning

Lead (chemical symbol Pb) is an element with the atomic number 82 and atomic weight of 207.2. Its name is derived from the Anglo-Saxon word léad. Lead’s chemical symbol comes from the Latin word for lead, plumbum. Lead is a normal constituent of the earth’s crust and found in trace amounts in soil, water, plants, and other living organisms. If left in its natural state, lead poses no risk to human health. However, once released from earthen ores and processed into materials for human industrial use and consumption, it is dispersed widely into the environment. Lead poisoning in humans has been linked to lower IQ and difficulties with certain cognitive processes. This entry discusses occupational lead poisoning, measuring lead in the human body, childhood lead ...

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