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Pesticides in household dust and soil: exposure pathways for children of agricultural families.

Simcox NJ; Fenske RA; Wolz SA; Lee IC; Kalman DA
Environ Health Perspect 1995 Dec; 103(12):1126-1134
The incidence of exposure of children from agricultural families to agricultural chemicals was studied. Soil and dust samples from the homes of agricultural families and nonagricultural referent families were analyzed for azinphosmethyl (86500), phosmet (732116), chlorpyrifos-phosphorothioate (2921882), and ethyl-parathion (56382). Azinphosmethyl was reported by the families to be the most commonly used organophosphate pesticide. One or more of the examined chemicals were found in 58% of the soil samples from agricultural family homes. Only two soil samples from referent homes exceeded the limits of quantitation for the chemicals studied. All four studied chemicals were identified in 62% of the agricultural family homes and 66% of these had concentrations of one or more of the chemicals exceeding 1,000 nanograms/milliliter. All of the agricultural family homes had dust samples containing azinphosmethyl. Only one of the referent homes had dust samples containing all four chemicals. Median household dust levels were up to 100 times higher than soil levels in both family types. Agricultural family homes had significantly higher levels of azinphosmethyl, chlorpyrifos, and parathion in household dust and azinphosmethyl in soil. Agricultural family homes having members working as chemical applicators had significantly higher median dust concentrations containing chlorpyrifos and parathion. A tendency for median organophosphate dust levels to decrease with increasing distance from an orchard was seen in agricultural families; this finding was significant only for parathion. The mass of chemical per unit surface area of carpeting was significantly higher in agricultural family homes for chlorpyrifos and parathion. The authors conclude that children from agricultural families have a higher potential for exposure to agricultural chemicals.
Agriculture; Agricultural-workers; Agricultural-products; Agricultural-chemicals; Farmers; Families; Pesticides; Dust-collection; Dust-control; Dust-counters; Dust-measurement; Dust-inhalation; Dust-particles; Dust-sampling; Dusts; Soil-sampling; Soil-analysis; Insecticides; Organo-phosphorus-compounds; Organo-phosphorus-pesticides; Chromatographic-analysis; Toxic-effects; Exposure-levels; Environmental-exposure; Dust-exposure; Insecticides; Organo-phosphorus-pesticides
Department of Environmental Health, University of Washington, Seattle 98195, USA
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Environmental Health Perspectives
Page last reviewed: October 16, 2020
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division