Housing-based lead paint dust is the most common source of lead exposure for US-born children. Although year of housing construction is a critical indicator of the lead hazard to US children, not all housing of the same age poses the same risk to children. Additional information about housing condition is required to differentiate the housing-based lead risk at the parcel level. This study aimed to identify and assess a method for gathering and using observations of exterior housing conditions to identify active housing-based lead hazards at the parcel level. We used a dataset of pediatric blood lead observations (sample years 2000-2013, ages 6-72 months, n = 6,589) to assess associations between observations of exterior housing conditions and housing-based lead risk. We used graphical and Lasso regression methods to estimate the likelihood of an elevated blood lead observation (≥3.5 μg/dL). Our methods estimate a monotonic increase in the likelihood of an elevated blood lead observation as housing conditions deteriorate with the largest changes associated with homes in the greatest disrepair. Additionally we estimate that age of home construction works in consort with housing conditions to amplify risks among those houses built before 1952. Our analysis indicates that a survey of external housing conditions can be used in combination with age of housing in the identification process, at the parcel level, of homes that pose a housing-based lead hazard to children.
Child; Humans; Infant; Child, Preschool; Lead; Lead Poisoning; Housing Quality; Environmental Exposure; Housing; Dust; Paint
Built environment; Housing; Lead poisoning; Risk assessment
Wilson NJ, Friedman E, Kennedy K, et al. Using exterior housing conditions to predict elevated pediatric blood lead levels. Environ Res. 2023;218:114944. doi:10.1016/j.envres.2022.114944