Symptoms of Melamine Poisoning
Melamine is a chemical that is used in making plastic dinnerware, concrete, and fertilizers. I used to have lots of melamine plates, cups, bowls and saucers. Melamine is perfectly safe to be used in the dishes we eat from, but it isn’t safe to be used in human or animal foods. Melamine has been used in the past to boost the protein content in foods; it contains cyanuric acid and can cause kidney problems if ingested. It is not legal to use the chemical, melamine, in the human and animal food industry.
Melamine isn’t metabolized by the body; it will sit in the body and in time will create crystals in the kidneys. The crystals get stuck in the kidneys and turn into stones. They cause severe kidney pain because they are so difficult to pass. When they do pass, they cause bleeding due to the tissue being traumatized by the sharp edges on the stones. The larger the stones get, the more difficult it becomes to pass them and the worse the pain gets. People and animals who suffer from melamine poisoning can also suffer from frequent urinary tract infections; they may also succumb to kidney failure.
The symptoms of melamine poisoning are identical to the symptoms of kidney stones. The symptoms include pain in the kidneys, kidney stones, pain in the urinary tract due to the stones, elevated temperature, nausea, vomiting, lack of appetite, and elevated blood pressure.
It was reported in the New York Times that in China, there were 6 babies who died and 300,000 babies became very sick from melamine poisoning in 2008. Baby formulas, yogurt, milk and ice cream were contaminated with melamine. Babies fed melamine tainted formula, milk or other dairy products would suffer from the pain associated with kidney stones.
Due to the melamine poisoning epidemic in China, the United States FDA published “Guidance for Industry: Pharmaceutical Components at Risk for Melamine Contamination.” This publication is to help pharmaceutical manufacturers to recognize products that may be infected with melamine. This publication will help to prevent contaminated baby formulas and pharmaceuticals from entering the United States from other countries.
Cancer studies on melamine: Melamine research studies have been done on lab rats. High doses of melamine were fed to the rats for a period of 103 days; the male rats were found to have developed bladder cancer. So far the studies done on lab rats don’t confirm that melamine will cause cancer in humans.