Children’s jewelry recalled due to lead concerns

QCS Staff

The New Mexico Health Department is warning families that children’s jewelry in several New Mexico’s stores have been recalled by the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) due to a lead poisoning hazard, according to a press release.
The products include a variety of items from jewelry to key chains and rings.

“If you find these products in your home please take them away from your children and contact the manufacture for a refund,” said C. Mack Sewell, the department’s state epidemiologist in the release.

“Lead is especially harmful to young children as their developing bodies are very susceptible to the damaging effects,”  according to the release.

In the past few years, there has been increased awareness of lead in children’s jewelry. In 2006, CPSC issued 12 recalls of lead-containing children’s jewelry.  Young children can develop elevated blood lead levels from swallowing or sucking on leaded jewelry items, or sucking on hands and fingers that handled lead-containing items.  

A New Mexico child was lead poisoned last year from sucking on and handling a key chain decoration that contained lead, the release said

Although death from lead poisoning is rare in the United States, a child in Minnesota died the same year after swallowing a lead-containing charm that came with a pair of Reebok shoes. The CPSC is in the process of issuing a ban of all toy jewelry  containing more than .06 percent lead by weight.   

Even small amounts of lead in children can cause brain and nerve damage, which can result in the lowering of a child’s IQ, and cause learning and behavioral problems, Sewell said.

Higher levels of lead can cause hearing and kidney problems. Lead is also harmful to a developing fetus and pregnant woman should be concerned about present or past exposure to lead. 

Parents of children who may have been exposed to these products should consult with their health care provider about having a blood test to determine their lead level. Children’s blood lead levels of 10 micrograms per deciliter or higher warrant attention from the New Mexico Department of Health, Lead Poisoning Prevention Program, the release said.

For more information about lead poisoning, contact Julianne Vollmer at (505) 476-3586 or 1-(800) 879-3421.  
Additional lead-containing items such as toys and clothing have also been recently recalled.

For information and pictures of recalled lead-containing products, go to the New Mexico Department of Health website at http://www.nmhealth.org/eheb/LeadLinks.htm and look under Products Recalls and Notices.

For complete information on all products for children that have been recalled see http://www.cpsc.gov/cpscpub/prerel/prerel.html