Acute hazards to young children from residential pesticide exposures

Am J Public Health. 2000 Jun;90(6):971-3. doi: 10.2105/ajph.90.6.971.


Objectives: This study assessed acute hazards to young children from pesticides toxic enough to require child-resistant packaging.

Methods: The names of pesticides meeting acute toxicity criteria were ascertained from the Environmental Protection Agency. Poison Control Center reports identified children younger than 6 years who were exposed to these pesticides. Toxicity category, medical outcome, sex, and age were examined.

Results: A higher proportion of children with exposure to the more toxic products had serious medical outcomes. Children 2 years and younger were the predominant age group exposed.

Conclusions: Protective measures--substituting less lethal pesticides, reducing the concentration of the active ingredients, and improving packaging and storage--are recommended.

MeSH terms

  • Age Distribution
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Environmental Exposure / adverse effects*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Male
  • Pesticides / adverse effects*
  • Pesticides / classification
  • Poison Control Centers / statistics & numerical data
  • Poisoning / epidemiology
  • Poisoning / physiopathology
  • Treatment Outcome
  • United States / epidemiology
  • United States Environmental Protection Agency


  • Pesticides