Agricultural pesticide exposure and perinatal mortality in central Sudan

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Hospital- and community-based studies were conducted in central Sudan to investigate the association between pesticide exposure and perinatal mortality. The cases were 197 stillbirths in the hospital and 36 perinatal deaths in the community; the controls were 812 liveborn, normal-birth-weight infants in the hospital, and 1505 liveborn infants who survived for the first 7 days after birth in the community. The odds ratio (OR) of perinatal death associated with pesticide exposure was estimated using multiple logistic regression. There was a consistent and significant association between pesticide exposure and perinatal mortality in the hospital (adjusted OR=1.9; 95% confidence interval (Cl): 1.3-2.8) and the community populations (adjusted OR=2.7; 95% Cl: 1.1-6.4). The OR was significantly higher among women engaged in farming (3.6; 95% Cl: 1.6-8.0), but not among women in nonfarming occupations (1.6; 95% Cl: 0.8-3.3). The estimated attributable risks of perinatal death owing to pesticide exposure were 22.6% for hospital stillbirths and 15.7% for community perinatal deaths; but among women engaged in farming in the hospital population the attributable risks were substantially higher (34.5%).

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)317-321
Number of pages5
JournalBulletin of the World Health Organization
Issue number3-4
StatePublished - Jan 1 1993


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health

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