HOW TO OBTAIN CME CREDITS BY READING THIS ISSUE
Pediatricians can receive Category 1 credits for the Physician's Recognition Award of the American Medical Association by reading the following articles and successfully completing the quiz at the end of the issue. Complete instructions are given on the quiz pages.
The pretest below has been prepared to assist you in studying the following material. It indicates some of the areas to be covered and will make it possible for you to challenge your current knowledge of the material before reading further.
As human civilization has improved the standard of living through industrialization, a heavy price has been paid through increased exposure to environmental pollutants. Elements rarely encountered in nature at levels high enough to cause disease have been concentrated or synthesized into our household environments. Indeed, as our standard of Jiving has improved, so has the number of toxin exposures occurring in the home.
Research into environmental hazards is plentiful. The findings do not prove significant many times under rigorous review, however. With increased access to information through the print, television, and Internet media, many families act on suggested safety improvements without complete information. As providers of information and education, we must stay aware of studies promulgating changes in the environment and work to suggest only those with proven benefit. As consultants to policy makers in our government, we must also work to assure that our tax dollars are put to work preventing scientifically demonstrated hazards, rather than those that are politically expethent for their sensational value in the media.
This issue of Pediatric Annals provides excellent reviews on important and well-studied environmental hazards. Selected measures, based upon the unique metabolic, developmental, and behavioral characteristics of children are discussed to help reduce overall exposures.
1. Elemental mercury vapor in the environment largely comes from the burning of fossil fuels such as high-sulfur coal.
2. Swallowed, metallic mercury is easily absorbed through the small bowel wall.
3. Skin lesions are associated with chronic exposure to arsenic.
4. The most recent data from the United States indicate that bronchiolitis is the leading cause of hospitalization in infants.
ANSWERS TO THE PRETEST: