Lead induced anaemia due to traditional Indian medicine: a case report

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Lead intoxication in adults without occupational exposure is a rare and unexpected event.The case of a western European is reported who had severe anaemia after ingestion of several ayurvedic drugs, obtained during a trip to India. Laboratory findings showed high blood lead concentrations, an increased urinary lead concentration, and an increased urinary excretion of delta-aminolaevulinic acid. Also, slightly increased urinary concentrations of arsenic and silver were found. Physicians should be aware that with growing international travel and rising self medication with drugs from uncontrolled sources the risk of drug induced poisoning could increase in the future.

(Occup Environ Med 1999;56:282-283)

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