Questionnaire results on exposure characteristics of pregnant women participating in the Japan Environment and Children Study (JECS)

Miyuki Iwai-Shimada, Shoji F. Nakayama, Tomohiko Isobe, Takehiro Michikawa, Shin Yamazaki, Hiroshi Nitta, Ayano Takeuchi, Yayoi Kobayashi, Kenji Tamura, Eiko Suda, Masaji Ono, Junzo Yonemoto, Toshihiro Kawamoto, Yukihiro Ohya, Reiko Kishi, Nobuo Yaegashi, Koichi Hashimoto, Chisato Mori, Shuichi Ito, Zentaro YamagataHidekuni Inadera, Michihiro Kamijima, Takeo Nakayama, Hiroyasu Iso, Masayuki Shima, Yasuaki Hirooka, Narufumi Suganuma, Koichi Kusuhara, Takahiko Katoh

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

53 Citations (Scopus)


Background: The Japan Environment and Children's Study (JECS) is a nation-wide birth cohort study investigating environmental effects on children's health and development. In this study, the exposure characteristics of the JECS participating mothers were summarized using two questionnaires administered during pregnancy. Methods: Women were recruited during the early period of their pregnancy. We intended to administer the questionnaire during the first trimester (MT1) and the second/third trimester (MT2). The total number of registered pregnancies was 103,099. Results: The response rates of the MT1 and MT2 questionnaires were 96.8% and 95.1%, respectively. The mean gestational ages (SDs) at the time of the MT1 and MT2 questionnaire responses were 16.4 (8.0) and 27.9 (6.5) weeks, respectively. The frequency of participants who reported "lifting something weighing more than 20 kg" during pregnancy was 5.3% for MT1 and 3.9% for MT2. The Cohen kappa scores ranged from 0.07 to 0.54 (median 0.31) about the occupational chemical use between MT1 and MT2 questionnaires. Most of the participants (80%) lived in either wooden detached houses or steel-frame collective housing. More than half of the questionnaire respondents answered that they had "mold growing somewhere in the house". Insect repellents and insecticides were used widely in households: about 60% used "moth repellent for clothes in the closet," whereas 32% applied "spray insecticide indoors" or "mosquito coil or an electric mosquito repellent mat." Conclusions: We summarized the exposure characteristics of the JECS participants using two maternal questionnaires during pregnancy.

Original languageEnglish
Article number45
JournalEnvironmental Health and Preventive Medicine
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2018 Sept 15


  • Birth cohort
  • Epidemiology
  • Exposure
  • JECS
  • Japan Environment and Children's Study

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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