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Exposure to residential electric and magnetic fields and risk of childhood leukemia.

London-SJ; Thomas-DC; Bowman-JD; Sobel-E; Cheng-C; Peters-JM
Am J Epidemiol 1991 Nov; 134(9):923-937
A study was conducted to examine the relationship between home exposure to electric and magnetic fields, and the development of childhood leukemia. Interviews were conducted with the parents of 232 children diagnosed with leukemia between 1980 and 1987 and with the parents of 232 age matched controls. Measurements of electric and magnetic fields in and around the homes of subjects were conducted for 80% of the leukemia cases and 77% of controls. The Denver Wertheimer Leeper classification was used for wiring configurations at homes that were not accessible for direct measurements; the configurations used to predict exposure. No relationship between magnetic or electric field levels and leukemia was seen, however, an association between Denver Wertheimer Leeper wiring configuration classification and leukemia risk was identified. Potential confounders of the association between Denver Wertheimer Leeper wiring configurations classification and leukemia risk were investigated. Appliance use by children demonstrated two odds ratios that were greater than unity and statistically significant, black and white television and hair dryer use. Significant increases in the odds ratios were also seen for the use of incense and insecticides inside the home, for maternal exposure to nonionizing radiation, and paternal exposure to spray paint during the pregnancy, and paternal exposure to other chemicals after the pregnancy. Adjustment for these confounders had little effect on the wiring configuration and leukemia risk association. The authors conclude that an association exists between wiring configuration and childhood leukemia.
NIOSH-Author; Electrical-fields; Magnetic-fields; Exposure-levels; Cancer-rates; Children; Occupational-exposure; Electromagnetic-energy
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American Journal of Epidemiology