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Table 2 Mean prenatal whole blood total mercury concentrationsa (μg/L) and child BASC-2 scores by characteristics

From: Very low-level prenatal mercury exposure and behaviors in children: the HOME Study

Characteristics N (%) at 8 year visitb Mean prenatal mercury levels (mean ± SD) BASC-2 Externalizing score (mean ± SD) BASC-2 Internalizing score (mean ± SD) BASC-2 Behavior Symptoms Index (mean ± SD) BASC-2 Anxiety (mean ± SD)
All participants 226 (100) 0.90 ± 1.00 49.3 ± 9.5 48.0 ± 8.9 49.6 ± 9.1 49.5 ± 9.7
Maternal age at delivery
  ≤ 30 years 124 (54.9) 0.73 ± 0.58 49.8 ± 10.2 46.8 ± 8.7 49.6 ± 9.1 48.2 ± 9.7
  > 30 years 102 (45.1) 1.10 ± 1.31 48.7 ± 8.5 49.6 ± 8.9 49.6 ± 9.1 51.1 ± 9.6
Maternal ethnicity
 White 135 (59.7) 0.95 ± 1.16 49.1 ± 8.5 48.7 ± 9.1 49.2 ± 8.6 50.6 ± 10.0
 Others 91 (40.3) 0.81 ± 0.65 49.6 ± 10.8 47.1 ± 8.5 50.2 ± 9.7 47.9 ± 9.1
Midpoint value of income category at baseline
  > $ 40,000 131 (58.0) 1.04 ± 1.22 48.4 ± 8.1 48.7 ± 8.7 48.8 ± 8.8 50.5 ± 9.4
  ≤ $ 40,000 95 (42.0) 0.70 ± 0.47 50.6 ± 11.0 47.2 ± 9.1 50.7 ± 9.4 48.1 ± 10.0
Maternal education
 Completed Bachelor’s degree 105 (46.5) 1.13 ± 1.33 48.4 ± 7.7 48.3 ± 8.9 48.8 ± 8.7 50.5 ± 10.0
 Not completed Bachelor’s degree 121 (53.5) 0.69 ± 0.47 50.1 ± 10.7 47.8 ± 9.0 50.3 ± 9.4 48.7 ± 9.5
Marital status at baseline
 Married or living with partner 164 (72.6) 0.96 ± 1.11 48.9 ± 8.5 48.4 ± 8.6 49.1 ± 8.7 50.0 ± 9.3
 Unmarried or living alone 62 (27.4) 0.74 ± 0.53 50.4 ± 11.7 47.1 ± 9.6 50.8 ± 10.0 48.1 ± 10.8
Child sex
 Male 99 (43.8) 0.84 ± 0.74 51.0 ± 9.8 46.7 ± 8.3 50.7 ± 9.2 47.7 ± 8.7
 Female 127 (56.2) 0.94 ± 1.15 48.0 ± 9.0 49.1 ± 9.2 48.8 ± 9.0 50.9 ± 10.3
HOME score (at 12 months)
  ≥ 40 131 (62.4) 1.06 ± 1.23 48.5 ± 8.5 48.4 ± 8.5 48.7 ± 9.0 50.3 ± 9.4
  < 40 79 (37.6) 0.68 ± 0.41 50.8 ± 10.4 48.3 ± 9.8 51.1 ± 9.1 49.1 ± 10.4
Maternal depression (BDI-II) at 20 weeks
 Minimal depression (≤ 13) 174 (77.7) 0.98 ± 1.10 48.1 ± 8.8 47.3 ± 8.5 48.5 ± 8.7 49.3 ± 9.6
 Mild, moderate or severe depression (>  13) 50 (22.3) 0.61 ± 0.37 53.7 ± 10.7 50.8 ± 9.9 53.5 ± 9.4 50.3 ± 10.2
Fish intake
 Not at all 32 (14.2) 0.40 ± 0.28 47.6 ± 9.9 45.1 ± 8.2 47.6 ± 9.1 47.9 ± 10.1
 Less than once a month 64 (28.3) 0.64 ± 0.53 47.9 ± 8.6 48.0 ± 9.2 48.8 ± 9.1 49.1 ± 9.3
 1 to 3 times a month 80 (35.4) 1.00 ± 0.99 49.8 ± 8.8 48.6 ± 8.8 50.1 ± 8.9 49.9 ± 9.8
 More than once a week 50 (22.1) 1.38 ± 1.41 51.4 ± 10.9 49.2 ± 8.9 51.1 ± 9.2 50.5 ± 9.9
  1. aMean prenatal mercury concentrations defined as a mean of maternal mercury concentrations at 16-weeks, 26-weeks of gestation, delivery, and cord blood mercury concentrations
  2. bParticipants at 8-year visit with at least one mercury measurement and all BASC-2 data