BLOOD LEAD LEVELS OF MINING COMMUNITIES OF ZAMFARA STATE, NIGERIA
DANBABA ABDULJALAL1 , GARBA MUSA ABDULLAHI1 , USMAN MUSA ABUBAKAR2
1. Department of Pharmaceutical and Medicinal Chemistry, Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences Kaduna State University, Kaduna – Nigeria.
2. Department of Pharmaceutical and Medicinal Chemistry, Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria – Nigeria.
Afr. J Pharm Res Dev; Volume 12(1): 091-096 ; 2020
Mining activity in Zamfara State Nigeria is associated with serious health challenges in both children and adults of the mining communities. Deaths due to lead poisoning are common in Zamfara State, Nigeria. This study was aimed to determine the concentration of lead in the blood of dwellers in mining communities of Zamfara State. Blood samples of volunteers from 10 selected gold-mining communities in Zamfara State, Nigeria were collected and analysed for lead levels. Blood samples were collected from 49 children of age bracket (2-6 years) and 43 adult volunteers of age bracket (18 – 60 years). Samples were preserved and digested using the wet digestion procedure for biological samples and analyzed using Atomic Absorption Spectrophotometry (AAS) method. Results indicated that the mean blood lead (BLL) concentration in children ranged from 30.20 ± 7.74 to 159.40 ± 7.45 µg/dL, while in adults, the mean blood lead concentration ranged from 38.10 ± 5.62 to 148.20 ± 9.92 µg/dL. Within the threshold level of concern, the lower limit of blood lead concentration for children was found in Kwali and the higher limit in Bagega, while in adults the lower limit occurred in Tugar – Kudaku and the higher limit in Magami communities. In all cases, the BLL exceeded the WHO threshold limit of concern (10 µg/dL), and the results also indicated that children from 7 out of 10 villages require chelating therapy, as the mean BLL was greater than 45 µg/dL, which is the WHO lower limit for chelating therapy. The lead concentrations in children compared to adults were not significantly different (p < 0.05) within a community, but the mean blood lead concentration was significantly different (p < 0.05) across some communities.
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KEYWORDS: Blood lead level, mining communities, gold-mining, lead poisoning, Zamfara State.