Study type: Epidemiological study (observational study)

Electrical power lines and childhood leukemia: a study from Greece. epidem.

Published in: Int J Cancer 1997; 73 (3): 345-348

Aim of study (acc. to author)

A nationwide case-control study was conducted in Greece to investigate the association between exposure to extremely low frequency electric and magnetic fields (ELF-EMF) and childhood leukemia.

Further details

Exposure was assessed by calculating three EMF metrics: voltage (U) of each of the two closest transmission lines divided by distance (d), voltage divided by the square of distance and voltage divided by the cube of the distance. Furthermore, five groups of wire code categories accommodated to the conditions in Greece were assigned: 400 kV and 150 kV transmission lines were considered very high voltage, 66 kV high voltage, 15 - 22 kV medium voltage, 6.6 kV medium-low voltage, and 0.4 kV low voltage.

Endpoint/type of risk estimation

Type of risk estimation: (odds ratio (OR))

Exposure

Assessment

Exposure groups

Group Description
Reference group 1 EMF metric U/d: < 11.7 V/m
Group 2 EMF metric U/d: 11.7 - < 40 V/m
Group 3 EMF metric U/d: 40 - < 150 V/m
Group 4 EMF metric U/d: 150 - < 500 V/m
Group 5 EMF metric U/d: ≥ 500 V/m
Reference group 6 EMF metric U/d²: < 0.4 V/m²
Group 7 EMF metric U/d²: 0.4 - < 2.3 V/m²
Group 8 EMF metric U/d²: 2.3 - < 4.2 V/m²
Group 9 EMF metric U/d²: 4.2 - < 25 V/m²
Group 10 EMF metric U/d²: ≥ 25 V/m²
Reference group 11 EMF metric U/d³: < 0.02 V/m³
Group 12 EMF metric U/d³: 0.02 - < 0.4 V/m³
Group 13 EMF metric U/d³: 0.4 - < 0.5 V/m³
Group 14 EMF metric U/d³: 0.5 - < 3.2 V/m³
Group 15 EMF metric U/d³: ≥ 3.2 V/m³
Group 16 wire code: very high voltage
Group 17 wire code: high voltage
Group 18 wire code: medium voltage
Group 19 wire code: medium-low voltage
Group 20 wire code: low voltage

Population

Case group

Control group

Study size

Cases Controls
Eligible 153 -
Participants 153 245
Evaluable 117 202
Statistical analysis method:

Conclusion (acc. to author)

None of the four different exposure measures indicated a statistically significant trend for increase in childhood leukemia risk with increasing exposure level. The authors concluded that the results did not support a causal link between residential proximity to electrical power lines and the risk for childhood leukemia.

Study funded by

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