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DOES ORGANOPHOSPHATE PESTICIDES EXPOSURE BRING OUT NEUROLOGICAL SYMPTOMS IN THE CHILDREN OF AGRICULTURE WORKERS IN RURAL INDIA?
Prachi Sawant* and Neelam Sukhsohale
In rural areas of developing countries, children of agricultural workers have a high potential for exposure to organ phosphorus (OP) pesticides. This puts them at an increased risk of damage to neurobehavioural performance, cognitive and psychomotor dysfunction. Various neurological symptoms like muscarinic (diarrhea, urinary incontinence, lacrimation, excessive salivation), nicotinic(tremors, muscle weakness, tachycardia) and general symptoms (headache, insomnia, numbness in legs, fatigue, anorexia, nausea, vomiting, dizziness, lethargy) were assessed by a specially designed Q16 questionnaire. Exposure index (EI) was calculated by multiplying the number of hours exposed to OP pesticides and the number of years of exposure. Our study findings suggest that neurologic symptoms involved both central and peripheral nervous systems, resulting from occupational and environmental exposure to OP pesticides. The high prevalence of neurologic symptoms (muscarinic, nicotinic and general) reported in exposed children could be attributed to chronic effects of OP pesticides on the central nervous system.[Full Text Article]