NASET News Alert
ADHD Cases Linked to Lead and SmokingSeptember 25, 2006
About one-third of attention deficit cases among U.S. children may be linked with tobacco smoke before birth or to lead exposure afterward, according to provocative new research.
Even levels of lead the government considers acceptable appeared to increase a child's risk of having attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, the study found.
It builds on previous research linking attention problems, including ADHD, with childhood lead exposure and smoking during pregnancy, and offers one of the first estimates for how much those environmental factors might contribute.
"It's a landmark paper that quantifies the number of cases of ADHD that can be attributed to very important environmental exposures," said Dr. Leo Trasande, assistant director of the Center for Children's Health and the Environment at Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York.
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