The authors conducted a cross-sectional study to determine blood lead levels in children who attended kindergarten schools and nurseries in Nicosia, Cyprus, and to correlate their findings with (a) home and school environments, (b) behavior of the children, and (c) socioeconomic characteristics. Capillary blood for lead assay was collected from March 2001 to September 2001 from children who lived and attended school in Nicosia. Children who lived and attended school in a rural setting served as controls. Parental questionnaires and interviews yielded information about socioeconomic background, environment, and children's habits and health. Overall findings indicated that children in Nicosia had mean blood lead levels similar to controls (i.e., <10 μmlg/dl)—the level of concern defined by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The findings of our study likely represent high standards of hygiene adopted by parents and teachers, rather than knowledge embraced by parents and teachers about risks associated with lead exposure and sources of lead exposure.
- Blood lead
- Environmental exposure