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  QUESTION: Bottle caps and lead poisoning, 14 Apr 2003,  Colorado USA

Would ingestion of a bottle cap cause lead poisoning?

ANSWER: 23 Jul 2003

Dear Karin,

some wine bottles have a lead cap over the cork which would certainly cause lead poisoning if a pet ingested one but I am not aware of other bottle caps containing lead. Do you have any more detail? Is it a metal cap? What kind of bottle was it from? What is the source country for the cap/bottle and the approximate age? Does the cap appear on an x-ray of the gut?

There could conceivably be lead in some metal alloys eg bronze, brass or pewter or in the zinc used for galvanising but I've never heard of any of these materials being used for bottle caps. I hope this helps.

Yours sincerely
Elizabeth O'Brien

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