Blood lead levels in Taiwanese adults: Distribution and influencing factors

Saou Hsing Liou, Trong Neng Wu, Horn Che Chiang, Guang Yang Yang, Tsann Yang, Yea Quay Wu, Jim Shoung Lai, Shien Tsong Ho, Ching Chang Lee, Ying Chin Ko, Kquei Nu Ko, Po Ya Chang

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35 Citations (Scopus)


Five-thousand nine-hundred thirteen Taiwanese adults were selected by multistage sampling methods to investigate environmental lead exposure in Taiwan. The blood specimens were distributed to six laboratories for blood lead levels (BLL) measurement. The mean BLL of the 5913 Taiwanese adults was 8.28 ± 5.39 μg/dl, with a maximum level of 57.6 μg/dl. The median was 7.0 μg/dl and 90th percentile was 15.0 μg/dl. BLLs were associated with gender, ethnic group, education level, smoking, alcohol consumption, herbal drug consumption, milk consumption, sources of drinking water, level of urbanization, and occupational lead exposure. These results showed that BLLs in Taiwanese adults were stable during the 2-year study. Most of the influencing factors were consistent with other studies, while local risk factors, such as Chinese herbal drug consumption are important ways of preventing the general population from overexposure to lead.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)211-219
Number of pages9
JournalScience of the Total Environment
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 1996 Feb 23

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Environmental Engineering
  • Environmental Chemistry
  • Waste Management and Disposal
  • Pollution


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