Objectives: To estimate the cumulative incidence rate of cases of acute pesticide poisonings among Nicaraguan population older than fifteen years in the year 2000.
Methods: Data concerning pesticide exposure and health effects were assessed in a nationally representative survey. Based on self reported cases we estimated the one year incidence rate and the number of expected cases of acute pesticide poisonings in the country.
Results: Among the 3169 survey respondents, we identified 72 persons who self reported one episode of acute pesticide poisoning in 2000. Of these, 65 cases (90%) were related to occupational exposure, 5 cases (7%) to domestic exposure and 2 cases (3%) to intentional exposure. The incidence rate/100 persons of acute pesticide poisonings was 2.3 (95% CI 1.7-2.8) in the entire population of Nicaragua in 2000. This corresponds to 66,113 cases (95% CI 51,017 - 81,210). The highest rate was found among males in rural areas, particularly among farmers, agriculture and cattle workers.
Conclusion: This study demonstrates an extremely high risk of cases of acute pesticide poisonings in Nicaragua. Considering this, comprehensive measures should be implemented to reduce adverse health effects.
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