Childhood Lead Poisoning Guidelines for Clinicians

To assist clinicians with the prevention, detection, and medical management of childhood lead poisoning, the North Shore Health Department (NSHD) reviews current recommendations from leading resources including the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the American Academy of Pediatrics, and the American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, and issues additional local guidelines when appropriate. After reviewing this information the North Shore Health Department has created a toolkit for physicians as a reference guide.

Protect Our Children From Lead, A Pediatric Healthcare Providers Toolkit (PDF)

For further information or to consult with NSHD nursing staff, contact the NSHD at (414) 371-2980.

Lead Testing Recommendations

Testing of children: The NSHD follows the recommendations set forth by the State of Wisconsin regarding testing for lead in children. These guidelines can be viewed and printed out by clicking here.

Testing of pregnant or lactating women: The NSHD follows guidelines issued by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) regarding blood lead testing of pregnant or lactating women. The routine universal testing of all pregnant or lactating women is not recommended. Risk assessment of lead exposure should take place and blood lead testing should be performed if a risk factor is identified.

View ACOG Lead Screening During Pregnancy and Lactation Recommendations
View CDC Guidelines for the Identification and Management of Lead Exposure in Pregnant and Lactating Women (PDF)

Reporting of Blood Lead Testing

State law Wis. Stat. 254.13  (link is external) requires that all blood lead test results on Wisconsin residents be reported to the Wisconsin Department of Health Services (DHS). The specific requirements for reporting blood lead results, such as timetable, content, form, etc., are described in Wis. Admin. Rule 181 (link is external). Health care providers are responsible for sending complete demographic information as required by Wis. Admin. Rule 181 (link is external) to the analytical laboratory with each blood lead sample. This allows the laboratory to include the demographics in the blood lead report.

Medical Case Management of Blood Lead Levels

Childhood Lead Poisoning Case Management: All children who live in the North Shore and have a blood lead level of 5 micrograms per deciliter (µg/dL) or higher will receive follow-up by the North Shore Health Department based on the blood lead level reported. Clinicians are advised to follow the North Shore guidelines for medical case management. These guidelines and recommendations can be found in Protect Our Children From Lead, A Pediatric Healthcare Providers Toolkit.