Skip to main content

What lead acetate used for? and what is the dose?


Rajive Goel 17 Sep 2011

Lead Acetate could be used as a sweetener, like other lead(II) salts, lead(II) acetate has a sweet taste, which has led to its use as a sugar substitute throughout history. The ancient Romans, who had few sweeteners besides honey, would boil must (grape juice) in lead pots to produce a reduced sugar syrup called defrutum, concentrated again into sapa. This syrup was used to sweeten wine and to sweeten and preserve fruit. It is possible that lead(II) acetate or other lead compounds leaching into the syrup might have caused lead poisoning in anyone consuming it. Therefore, lead acetate is no longer used as a sweetener in most of the world because of its recognized toxicity. Modern chemistry can easily detect it, which has all but stopped the illegal use that continued decades after legal use as a sweetener was terminated.

It is also used in men's hair coloring products like Grecian Formula.

Lead(II) acetate paper is used to detect the poisonous gas hydrogen sulfide. The gas reacts with lead(II) acetate on the moistened test paper to form a grey precipitate of lead(II) sulfide.

Lead(II) acetate solution was a commonly used folk remedy for sore nipples. In modern medicine, for a time, it was used as an astringent, in the form of Goulard's Extract.

An aqueous solution of lead(II) acetate is the byproduct of the 50/50 mixture of hydrogen peroxide and white vinegar used in the cleaning and maintenance of stainless steel firearm suppressors (silencers) and compensators. The solution is agitated by the bubbling action of the hydrogen peroxide, and the main reaction is the dissolution of lead deposits within the suppressor by the acetic acid, which forms lead acetate. Because of its high toxicity, this chemical solution must be appropriately disposed by a chemical processing facility or hazardous materials center. Alternatively, the solution may be reacted with sulfuric acid to precipitate insoluble lead(II) sulfate. The solid may then be removed by mechanical filtration and is safer to dispose of than aqueous lead acetate.

It was also used in making of slow matches during the middle ages. It was made by mixing natural form of lead(II) oxide called litharge and vinegar.

Lead(II) acetate has also been used to treat poison ivy.

The dose would depend upon the use of lead acetate, hope the answer is to your satisfaction?

Take care, best wishes!

Votes: +0 free discount card

Similar questions

Why can't you lay down after taking a potassium?

Will taking colace capsules lead to dependency?

Does long term use of Viibryd lead to forgetfulness?

Can severe asthma lead to COPD?

Search for questions

Still looking for answers? Try searching for what you seek or ask your own question.