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FOR RELEASE: March 29, 2002
CONTACT: Jane Ann Nichols, Administrator
Ottawa County Health Department  
918/540-2481

National Expert on Childhood Lead Poisoning to Speak in Miami April 4

Low level lead exposure, even at blood lead levels below 5 micrograms per deciliter, can lead to learning problems and cognitive disabilities in children, according to national expert Dr. Bruce Lanphear, associate professor of pediatrics and environmental health at Children's Hospital Medical Center and the University of Cincinnati.

"New studies indicate that our efforts should focus on preventing childhood lead exposure before it occurs, which is in stark contrast with our current prevention efforts that occur only after a child is unduly exposed," said Dr. Lanphear.

Dr. Lanphear will speak to Oklahoma health care professionals at Northeastern Oklahoma A&M College in Miami at 6:30 p.m. on Thursday, April 4. He will discuss the adverse health effects of lead poisoning on children and his research in the prevention of childhood lead exposure.

"We are honored to have Dr. Lanphear come to share his knowledge and expertise with our medical community about the dangers of lead poisoning in children," said Ottawa County Health Department Administrator Jane Ann Nichols.

Lanphear is also associate director for research in the Division of General & Community Pediatrics. He has conducted numerous epidemiological studies of environmental hazards in children.

Dr. Lanphear is the principal investigator of a trial to test the effect of reducing exposure to environmental tobacco smoke on asthma symptoms in children and a National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS) / Environmental Protection Agency funded Children's Environmental Health Center trial to study the effect of fetal and early childhood exposures to prevalent neurotoxicants, including lead, PCBs, mercury, tobacco smoke and pesticides.

For more information about the April 4 presentation or the effects of childhood lead poisoning, contact the Ottawa County Health Department at 918/540-2481.

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