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Severe mercury poisoning found in 5-year-old boy

[ 2014-04-02 10:33] 来源:中国日报网     字号 [] [] []  
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Police in Kunming, Yunnan province, announced the start of an investigation into the mercury poisoning of a 5-year-old boy on Tuesday.

The boy, Yu Jiangyue, is currently receiving treatment at the 307 Hospital of the People's Liberation Army in Beijing, where initial tests showed the level of mercury to be more than 200 times normal in his blood and more than 10,000 times normal in his urine.

Bai Jie, a police officer in Guandu district of Kunming, said Tuesday that officers arrived in Beijing and talked with family members and doctors who are treating the boy, but there has been no progress in the case.

The boy became severely ill at the beginning of this year and had a fever for more than a week, his father, surnamed Yu, said.

The father said the boy also had two large bumps in his buttocks, and silver material was found inside when the bumps were squeezed.

"We immediately took him to the hospital, and the X-ray radiograph showed that there was mercury all over his body, especially in the stomach," he said.

Yu said that the boy once told him that mercury had been given to him in food by a fellow student at his kindergarten. He said there was no chance the boy could have received it from anyone else.

The family first had the boy's health checked at the First Affiliated Hospital of Kunming Medical University, where tests showed a stunning amount of the liquid metal concentrated in parts of the boy's body.

However, the hospital offered no medical solution, as doctors feared that an operation would cause mercury to flow into the wounds and result in severe infections.

The family then went to a hospital in Guangzhou, which also offered no solution. Finally, the family went to the hospital in Beijing.

The boy's mother, Jiang Xiaoling, who kept the boy company in a hospital ward, told Beijing News on Monday that the he was in stable condition and the hospital planned to perform a surgical procedure on Tuesday.

Jiang declined an interview request by China Daily. But she later sent a text message to a reporter saying that the boy is "doing fine".

Mercury, a heavy, silvery-white toxic metal commonly used in thermometers and barometers, can cause severe harm to body organs, especially the kidneys and liver, according to experts.

(中国日报网英语点津 Helen 编辑)

Severe mercury poisoning found in 5-year-old boy

About the broadcaster:

Severe mercury poisoning found in 5-year-old boy

Anne Ruisi is an editor at China Daily online with more than 30 years of experience as a newspaper editor and reporter. She has worked at newspapers in the U.S., including The Birmingham News in Alabama and City Newspaper of Rochester, N.Y.