Table 2.

Association between personal characteristics and plasma concentrations of DDE and PCBs among women in the LIBCSP, 1996-1997

Tertiles of DDE serum concentration, lipid corrected (ng/g lipid)
CharacteristicsLower third 8.4-455 (n = 335)Middle third 458-1,005 (n = 336)Upper third 1,006-11,819 (n = 336)rS*P
Median age (y)50.055.066.00.46***<0.001
Blacks, n (%)15 (4.5)18 (5.4)54 (16)<0.001
Breast-fed as an infant, n (%)93 (31)150 (44)176 (62)<0.001
Parity, n (%)0.014 (Kruskal-Wallis test)
    041 (12)41 (12)42 (13)00.0055 (Mantel-Haenszel χ2 test)
    141 (12)33 (9.8)36 (11)
    2-3207 (62)190 (57)178 (53)
    ≥446 (14)72 (21)80 (24)
Ever lactated,§ n (%)148 (44)99 (29)109 (32)0.0015
Median length of lactation§ (mo)8.24.94.5−0.17***<0.001
Median (n) BMI (kg/m2)
    Age 20 y20.0 (335)20.5 (333)20.8 (336)0.16***<0.001
    Age 30 y21.1 (335)21.6 (336)21.9 (336)0.18***<0.001
    Age 40 y22.5 (282)22.5 (320)23.0 (334)0.16***0.0010
    Age 50 y23.9 (172)24.0 (244)24.2 (297)0.11***0.069
    Age 60 y24.9 (65)23.8 (132)25.1 (226)0.11****0.032
    Age 70 y27.4 (16)24.3 (46)24.6 (104)0.221
    Current24.2 (335)25.0 (336)26.6 (336)0.20***0.001
Median BMI-gain** (kg/m2)
    Age 20 y-current4.35.05.70.097***<0.001
    Age 30 y-current2.73.54.30.11***<0.001
    Median length of residence on Long Island (y)31.033.033.00.082****0.186
High school education or less, n (%)99 (30)141 (42)177 (53)<0.001
Never used alcohol, n (%)152 (46)152 (46)178 (54)0.043
Never smoked cigarettes, n (%)158 (46)148 (43)170 (49)0.359
Median dairy consumption, weekly servings12.7 (262)10.47 (253)8.7 (259)−0.17***<0.016
Median fish consumption, weekly servings0.9 (269)0.99 (268)0.8 (266)0.820
Median cholesterol (g/L)1.951.981.980.861
Median triglycerides (g/L)1.141.181.280.086***0.004
Median total serum lipids (g/L)6.206.356.520.058
Median (range) DDE, uncorrected for lipids (μg/L)1.6 (0.06-4.7)4.2 (1.5-10.1)10.6 (3.9-66.4)
Tertiles of PCB†† serum concentration, lipid corrected (ng/g lipid)
CharacteristicsLower third 34-302 (n = 333)Middle third 303-476 (n = 333)Upper third 477-3,287 (n = 333)rS*P
Median age (y)51.056.064.00.39***<0.001
Blacks, n (%)21 (6)21 (6)45 (14)<0.001
Breast-fed as an infant, n (%)104 (35)128 (45)164 (58)<0.001
Parity, n (%)0.718 (Kruskal-Wallis test)
    041 (12)34 (10)48 (14)
    136 (11)40 (12)33 (9.9)0.230 (Mantel-Haenszel χ2 test)
    2-3197 (59)201 (62)173 (52)
    ≥459 (18)58 (17)79 (24)
Ever lactated,§ n (%)124 (37)118 (35)110 (33)0.256
Median length of lactation§ (mo)6.06.05.7−0.11****0.161
Median (n) BMI (kg/m2)
    Age 20 y20.2 (333)20.4 (332)20.6 (331)0.072****0.149
    Age 30 y21.6 (333)21.5 (333)21.6 (333)0.381
    Age 40 y22.8 (275)22.7 (323)22.6 (327)0.844
    Age 50 y24.6 (164)24.1 (250)23.8 (287)−0.083****0.245
    Age 60 y25.4 (56)25.0 (139)24.3 (214)−0.12****0.038
    Age 70 y26.5 (16)26.5 (48)23.9 (98)−0.17****0.017
    Current25.7 (333)25.0 (333)25.4 (333)0.655
Median BMI-gain** (kg/m2)
    Age 20 y-current5.44.84.4−0.11***0.017
    Age 30 y-current3.93.82.9−0.11***0.038
Median length of residence on Long Island (y)30.032.035.00.13***0.001
High school education or less, n (%)127 (38)138 (41)151 (45)0.059
Never used alcohol, n (%)145 (45)167 (51)166 (50)0.136
Never smoked cigarettes, n (%)148 (43)151 (44)174 (51)−0.071****0.046
Median dairy consumption, weekly servings12.610.09.1−0.11***<0.001
Median fish consumption, weekly servings0.70.81.00.089****0.059
Median cholesterol (g/L)2.011.981.91−0.15***<0.001
Median triglycerides (g/L)1.271.171.14−0.11***0.094
Median total serum lipids (g/L)6.566.336.16−0.14***<0.001
Median (range) PCB, uncorrected for lipids (μg/L)1.5 (0.27-3.2)2.4 (1.1-5.9)4.0 (1.3-21.9)
  • * Spearman correlations, rS, reported if statistically significant: ***, P < 0.01; ****, P < 0.05.

  • P for trend: Mantel-Haenszel χ2 test for categorical variables and Kruskal-Wallis test for continuous variables.

  • Information available on only 874 women.

  • § Among parous women only. Mantel-Haenszel χ2 test statistics is for ever lactated versus never lactated by organochlorine compound tertiles.

  • BMI = weight (kg) / height squared (m2).

  • Current = reference date.

  • ** Change in BMI from age 20 years to age at reference date or from age 30 years to age at reference date (e.g., current BMI-BMI20).

  • †† PCB defined as sum of PCB nos. 118,138,153, and 180.