244645 Avoiding the risk of lead exposure by detecting harmful lead level in children's products

Monday, October 31, 2011

Mithua Ghosh , Long Beach Public Health Laboratory, Long Beach, CA
Gilbert Alzona , Long Beach Public Health Laboratory, Long Beach, CA
Miriam Lachica, MA , Long Beach Public Health Laboratory, Long Beach, CA
Lead is found in painted surfaces of many consumer products, especially those that are manufactured abroad. CFR 1303.1 of the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act (CPSIA) states, “As of August 14, 2009, the maximum allowable total lead content of such items will fall to 0.009% (equivalent to 90 ppm).” Our objective was to develop a method of analysis by modifying our AIHA-certified methods of microwave digestion and Flame Atomic Absorption analysis to detect the lead levels in children's products with painted surfaces. The importance of detecting the level of lead in these products is to raise awareness and take actions to avoid the risk of lead exposure. We followed the existing EPA methods and CPSC protocols of sample processing and analysis. To produce enough statistical data for acceptable quality control and analysis parameters, we analyzed 50 samples of different matrices – metals, fabrics, plastic, ceramics, and paper products with painted surfaces and included with each run, a matrix blank, eight controls, and the lowest standard determined, which is 20% of CPSC's lowest reporting value. The method detection limit (MDL) for this method by our Varian 240FS instrument is calculated at 3 ppm. A separate MDL analysis was run and the calculation data was recorded on file for reference. Statistical data for controls are collected continuously to establish uncertainty and bias of the analysis. In actual cases, any item with >90 ppm lead would be referred to the local Childhood Lead Poisoning Prevention Program coordinator for follow up.

Learning Areas:
Environmental health sciences
Public health or related laws, regulations, standards, or guidelines

Learning Objectives:
1. Describe the importance of determining the lead content in children's products. 2. Explain why the Consumer Product Safety Information Act (CPSIA) of 2008 was enacted.

Keywords: Environmental Health, Lead

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am the primary analyst who performs the test.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.