1887
Volume 2016, Issue 1
  • ISSN: 2223-0440
  • EISSN:

Abstract

Lead is one of the oldest toxins existing in the environment that can affect almost all organs of the body without any noticeable symptom. Depending on its concentration in the body, lead may cause lower IQ level, autism, abnormal pregnancy outcome, abortion, and increased involvement in crime. As lead can cross the placental barrier and affect the fetus, pregnant women, fetuses, and children are more vulnerable to lead poisoning because of rapid bone mobilization and neurodevelopment. Therefore, this study aimed to evaluate the awareness of lead exposure among Bangladeshi women of childbearing age on the basis of their educational level. A questionnaire survey was conducted among the participants comprising both less-educated ( = 62) and more-educated ( = 52) women. Data were analyzed using SPSS (version20), and relevant statistical techniques were used to draw the results. The findings showed highly significant differences between the two groups in relation to economic condition, lifestyle, residential location, use of traditional cosmetics, and food habit ( < 0.0001). Although the more-educated women claimed that they were aware of the harmful effects of lead, as opposed to the less-educated women not being aware ( < 0.0001), they failed to substantiate their claim because this was not reflected in their everyday practices as revealed by the ‘previous birth outcome records’ of their fetuses. This indicated that their knowledge or awareness of lead, particularly its sources and detrimental effects, remained superficial, and their educational background had no statistically significant difference with respect to the awareness of lead toxicity ( = 0.103). Given that a mother's exposure to lead can directly affect her fetus, this study bears high significance, as the results imply that if women are aware of the sources of lead and the consequences of lead poisoning, the body burden of lead could be reduced in the next generation, which, in turn, would have a high economic impact.

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2016-04-14
2020-09-24
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  • Article Type: Research Article
Keyword(s): awareness , education , fetus , Lead Pb and women at child bearing age
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