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Gaceta Sanitaria

Print version ISSN 0213-9111


MUNOZ-QUEZADA, María Teresa; LUCERO, Boris; IGLESIAS, Verónica  and  MUNOZ, María Pía. Exposure pathways to pesticides in schoolchildren in the Province of Talca, Chile. Gac Sanit [online]. 2014, vol.28, n.3, pp.190-195. ISSN 0213-9111.

Objective: To describe pesticide concentrations in distinct environmental matrices at two time points (low and high seasons in local agricultural production) and to estimate the association between the presence of pesticide residues in matrices and the use of pesticides in the home with the sociodemographic variables of schoolchildren in the Province of Talca, Chile. Methods: A cross-sectional study was conducted in 190 schoolchildren. Families were surveyed about their children's vegetable consumption in school and at home, the use of pesticides in the home, and other sociodemographic variables. Additionally, we measured pesticide residues in vegetables and water consumed by the schoolchildren and in the soil of 14 schools. Results: At both time points, the vegetable matrix had the highest pesticide concentration, both in urban and rural schoolchildren. The most common pesticide residues in vegetables were chlorpyrifos, diphenylamine, pyrimethanil, and thiabendazole. In the home, pyrethroid and organophosphate pesticides were mainly used in summer. Dangerous pesticide residues such as azinphos methyl and dimethoate were found in vegetables consumed by the children in schools and households, and organochlorines were found in the soil in some schools. Conclusions: Pesticide exposure should be limited and the health effects related to pesticide exposure should be assessed in the school population.

Keywords : Environmental exposure; Pesticides; Organophosphates; Pyrethrins; Organochlorine compounds; Fungicides; Children.

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