The method for assessing occupational pesticide exposure does not appear to influence risk estimates for prostate cancer, non-Hodgkin lymphoma, or Parkinson disease, according to a study published online April 13 in Occupational & Environmental Medicine.
Johan Ohlander, Ph.D., from Utrecht University in the Netherlands, and colleagues examined how the applied exposure assessment method for pesticide exposure influenced risk estimates for chronic diseases. The influence of exposure assessment method type was examined on the summary risk ratio (sRR) of prostate cancer, non-Hodgkin lymphoma, and Parkinson disease in three meta-analyses (25, 29, and 32 studies, respectively). Group-level assessments, self-reported exposures, expert-level assessments, and biomonitoring were the exposure assessment method types examined.
The researchers observed no association for exposure assessment method types with statistically significant differences in sRRs across any of the health outcomes. There was variation in the heterogeneity of the results, from high in cancer studies to moderate and low in Parkinson disease studies. Significantly higher sRR estimates were seen with case-control designs compared with prospective cohort designs. In addition, significantly higher sRR estimates were seen with later versus earlier non-Hodgkin lymphoma studies. Significantly higher sRR estimates were seen for prostate cancer for studies from North America compared with studies from Europe.
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