Understanding My Child's Lead Test Result

A blood lead test tells you how much lead is in your child's blood. Lead can harm a child's growth, behavior and ability to learn. The lower the lever, the better. Most lead poisoning occurs when children eat or breathe in dust from old lead paint. You should test your child if you think he or she has had contact with lead.

What does the test result mean?

0-4 mcg/dL

  • Your child's lead result is about the same as most children in the United States.
  • Continue to protect your child from lead by following the prevention tips.
5-14 mcg/dL
  • Your child's lead result is high. Act quickly!
  • If your child's test was first done by pricking their fingertip, have them immediately tested by taking blood from a vein.
  • Talk with your doctor about ways to protect your child from lead, and about your child's diet, growth and development.
  • Look through your home for possible lead sources.
  • Test all other children who live in the same house.
  • Have your child tested again in one to three months.
15-44 mcg/dL
  • Your child's lead result is very high. Get help!
  • Follow the above steps for 5-14 mcg/dL.
  • Have your child tested again in one to four weeks.
  • Also, ask your doctor if your child should have a stomach x-ray or decontamination. 
44 mcg/dL and higher
  • Your child needs medical treatment right away!
  • Follow the steps above for 15-44 mcg/dL.
  • Have your child tested again within two days.
  • Also, ask your doctor if you should take your child to the hospital.
  • Remove all sources of lead before your child returns home.
*Content from Department of Health's My Child's Lead Test Result, refer for more information.