lead poisoning


Definition of lead poisoning

: chronic intoxication that is produced by the absorption of lead into the system and is characterized especially by fatigue, abdominal pain, nausea, diarrhea, loss of appetite, anemia, a dark line along the gums, and muscular paralysis or weakness of limbs

called also saturnism

Examples of lead poisoning in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Lee was on the left: In 1971, inspired by the Black Panthers and the Young Lords, Lee helped organize a health fair along Mott Street where locals could get free testing for lead poisoning, diabetes, tuberculosis, and other conditions. Alexandra Tatarsky, Vulture, "Corky Lee ‘Was Chinatown to Me’," 3 Feb. 2021 Supporters say the changes will improve efforts to reduce lead poisoning in children. Mark Schleifstein, NOLA.com, "Here are the Trump environmental rule changes that Biden might target," 17 Jan. 2021 One tool that emerged from the crisis is a form of artificial intelligence that could prevent similar problems in other cities where lead poisoning is a serious concern. Sidney Fussell, Wired, "An Algorithm Is Helping a Community Detect Lead Pipes," 14 Jan. 2021 The Tribune reported in 2016 that most of the homes sampled in Chicago are owned by water department employees or retirees living on the Far Northwest and Far Southwest sides, where cases of lead poisoning are rare. Michael Hawthorne, chicagotribune.com, "Trump EPA overhaul of lead pipe regulations allows toxic plumbing to stay in the ground in Chicago and other cities," 22 Dec. 2020 The biologists lure the birds back with food, check their blood for lead poisoning and sometimes even bring the birds into captivity, all in a bid to keep them healthy. Jesse Klein, Wired, "Severe Wildfires Are Devastating the California Condor," 11 Dec. 2020 Nearly 60% of gunshot victims were born to a mother without a high school diploma, and more than 40% of pediatric trauma patients suffered lead poisoning at critical points in their development. Evan Macdonald, cleveland, "University Hospitals’ Antifragility Initiative works to end the cycle of violence in Cleveland, one teen at a time," 26 Oct. 2020 This tracking is important because the flocks are carefully supervised to protect against lead poisoning, the greatest killer of condors by far. Jesse Klein, Wired, "Severe Wildfires Are Devastating the California Condor," 11 Dec. 2020 In the week before Election Day, as case counts climbed, the health department posted on Twitter and Facebook about flu vaccinations, the prevention of carbon monoxide poisoning and lead poisoning detection. Mario Ariza, sun-sentinel.com, "Secrecy and spin: How Florida’s governor misled the public on the COVID-19 pandemic," 3 Dec. 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'lead poisoning.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of lead poisoning

circa 1842, in the meaning defined above

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about lead poisoning

Time Traveler for lead poisoning

Time Traveler

The first known use of lead poisoning was circa 1842

See more words from the same year

Statistics for lead poisoning

Last Updated

15 Feb 2021

Cite this Entry

“Lead poisoning.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/lead%20poisoning. Accessed 24 Feb. 2021.

Style: MLA
MLA Chicago APA Merriam-Webster

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for lead poisoning

lead poisoning


Medical Definition of lead poisoning

: a serious acute or chronic condition that is caused by exposure and absorption of lead (such as lead carbonate) and is characterized by variable symptoms including fatigue, abdominal pain, vomiting, constipation, impaired cognitive development or function, joint and muscle pain, loss of appetite, anemia, a dark line along the gums, encephalopathy, seizures, paralysis, and kidney damage

called also plumbism, saturnism

More from Merriam-Webster on lead poisoning

Nglish: Translation of lead poisoning for Spanish Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about lead poisoning

Comments on lead poisoning

What made you want to look up lead poisoning? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


Test Your Vocabulary

More Confusing Words—Quiz

  • cats on impossible timber
  • The magician ______ moved the selected card to the top of the deck.
How Strong Is Your Vocabulary?

Test your vocabulary with our 10-question quiz!

Universal Daily Crossword

A daily challenge for crossword fanatics.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!