2005, Number 4
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ABSTRACTObjetive: This papers is a revision from recent studies relationed with the acute leukemia (AL) epidemiology in children. Cancer is the second cause of death in the pediatric population in Mexico from 1 to 15 years old. The AL are the types of cancer with more frequency in children below 15 years old and the cost of taking care of a child with cancer represents to the health institutions around 620 thousand dollars per year per case. In different places of the world the frequency of the AL has been increased and in Mexico City this is similar. In data from Instituto Mexicano del Seguro Social, in Mexico City, reports one of the highest worldwide. The environmental risk factors more consistent are the exposition in utero to X-ray, occupational exposition and pesticides. Other risk factors studied, as the exposition to electromagnetic fields, smoking and alcohol consumption in the parents, diet, and others, had had controversial results. These controversies can be explained by methodological mistakes in the studies and also because these did not asses the interaction between the susceptibility to the AL and the environmental factors, situation that could lead to the better understanding of the causal mechanisms of the disease. However it is recommended to have an attitude of prudent caution to accept that these factors are a cause of the AL, and to have an energetic position in order to decrease the exposure to them and produce more adequate preventive strategies.
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