To the Editor: In his Editorial, Dr Heaney1 states that there is little cause for alarm about
lead contamination of calcium supplements. However, the ongoing use of such
contaminated products, especially dolomite and bonemeal, can have serious
neurologic, gastrointestinal, cutaneous, and hematologic effects. In a previous
report,2 I countered his criticism of Ross
et al3 who "do not demonstrate the dangers
they fear." Lead-related complications are compounded for pregnant women,
older persons attempting to prevent or minimize osteoporosis, and children
with suspected milk allergy. A US Food and Drug Administration official stated,
"However, individuals who consume more than two to three times the recommended
dose of bonemeal would be at greater risk if the lead content of the particular
bonemeal product is high."4 I have previously
underscored the wide variations in individual batches.2
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