Send to

Choose Destination
Sci Total Environ. 1990 May 15;94(3):261-72.

Health problems in Galena, Kansas: a heavy metal mining Superfund site.

Author information

Department of Preventive Medicine, School of Medicine, University of Kansas Medical Center, Kansas City 66103.


Health problems at a heavy metal mining Superfund site were surveyed using prevalence information from 1980-85. Current environmental exposures include lead and cadmium in drinking water, mine wastes, and surface soils. Age- and sex-specific illness rates in whites in an exposed town (Galena) were compared with similar rates in two control towns. Multivariate analyses of morbidity data examined statistically significant risk factors for relevant illness in the three towns. Mortality rates for 1980-85 for white residents of Galena and for the U.S. were compared using univariate analysis. Among residents of the three towns who had lived there at least 5 years prior to 1980, there was either a statistically significant or borderline excess reported prevalence in Galena of chronic kidney disease (females aged greater than or equal to 65), heart disease (females aged greater than or equal to 45), skin cancer (males aged 45-64), and anemia (females aged 45-64). Multivariate analyses revealed statistically significant associations of stroke, chronic kidney disease, hypertension, heart disease, skin cancer, and anemia with variables related to Galena exposure. Personal physicians were contacted to confirm the information provided by the subjects; validity was good for all reported illnesses except chronic kidney disease. A statistically significant excess of deaths from hypertensive disease (females aged greater than or equal to 65), ischemic heart disease (males and females aged greater than or equal to 65), and stroke (females aged greater than or equal to 65) was found in residents of Galena City. This study confirms that environmental agents in Galena are associated with, and may have contributed to, the causation of several chronic diseases in residents of this community. Further studies are recommended.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Elsevier Science
Loading ...
Support Center