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October 2021

Intern Med. 1997 Jan; 36(1): 56-8.

Herbal medicine-associated lead intoxication.

Hasegawa S, Nakayama K, Iwakiri K, An E, Gomi S, Dan K, Katsumata M, Minami M, Wakabayashi I.

Department of Internal Medicine, Nippon Medical School, Tokyo.

A female patient visited our hospital with abdominal pain and anemia. Examination for a gastrointestinal disease gave no diagnostic information. Laboratory studies of the parameters of heme biosynthesis revealed an enzymatic inhibition by lead. The diagnosis of lead poisoning was confirmed by detection of an elevated blood lead level. Excessive lead ingestion was thought to be caused by herbal medicines and/or by an earthen teapot.


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