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What are the prevalence of elevated BLLs and possible sources of exposure? 


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The prevalence of elevated blood lead levels (BLLs) and possible sources of exposure vary across different populations and regions. In veterans receiving US Veterans Health Administration care, the prevalence of BLLs ≥10 µg/dL and ≥25 µg/dL was highest in non-Hispanic White men and those aged 25 to 34 years. Firearms were the largest exposure source among veterans with elevated BLLs . In a study conducted in Benin, sub-Saharan Africa, the prevalence of BLLs >50 µg/L in children at 6 years of age was 59.5%, and consumption of peanuts and bushmeat killed by lead bullets were associated with increased BLLs . In Missouri, occupational exposures, particularly in battery manufacturing and lead mining industries, accounted for the majority of adults with elevated BLLs . In an urban settlement in Vellore, Southern India, elevated BLLs were observed in cord blood samples and maternal blood, but levels normalized in infants at 6 weeks of age, indicating no continuing exposure in early life .

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The prevalence of elevated BLLs in the study was 90.5% in mothers and 76.2% in cord blood samples. The possible sources of exposure were past environmental exposure resulting in trans-placental transfer of lead to newborns and drinking water as a potential source of lead.
The prevalence of elevated BLLs in Missouri adults in 2013 was 21%. The main sources of exposure were occupational, particularly in battery manufacturing and lead mining industries.
The prevalence of elevated BLLs (>50 µg/L) at 6 years of age was 59.5%. Possible sources of lead exposure included consumption of peanuts, bushmeat killed by lead bullets, consumption of rice, paternal occupational exposure, and the presence of activity with the potential use of lead.
The prevalence of BLLs 10 µg/dL or higher peaked at 4.9 per 100,000 veterans in fiscal year 2019. Firearms were the largest source of exposure among veterans with elevated BLLs.
The prevalence of BLLs 10 µg/dL or higher peaked at 4.9 per 100,000 veterans in fiscal year 2019. Firearms were the largest source of exposure among veterans with elevated BLLs.

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