Katherine Himes

Project title: Investigation of Orchard Proximity Effect on Organophosphorous Pesticide Exposures Among Agricultural Workers and Their Families

Degree: MS | Program: Environmental Health (EH) | Project type: Thesis/Dissertation
Completed in: 2003 | Faculty advisor: Richard A. Fenske


Organophosphorous (OP) pesticides used on central Washington crops have been sown to have adverse human health effects, affecting primarily the central nervous system. Several studies have shown that agricultural workers often unintentionally bring these pesticides into their homes through the paraoccupational or take home pathway. This pathway includes bringing pesticides home on work clothing, on unwashed body parts and clothes. Many agricultural workers that may bring pesticides home from the workplace also live in homes near fields. Proximity to orchards and fields where OP pesticides are sprayed can also influence pesticide exposures through drift at the time of application, also known as te spray drift effect. Children of these agricultural families are of particular interest, as their OP pesticide exposures may be more harmful because of susceptible, developing nervous systems. This thesis investigates the effects of orchard proximity on children's OP pesticide exposures in agricultural communities in cenral Washington State. The word orchard in this paper is used to describe a field or orchard where OP pesticides are likely sprayed during the summer months.

Taken from the beginning of thesis.