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||Reliability of Questionnaire Data in the Distant Past: Relevance for Radiation Exposure Assessment.
||Drozdovitch V, Kukhta T, Minenko V, Trofimik S, Bouville A, Potischman N
||Interviews with questionnaires are often employed to provide information that may be used for exposure assessment, although the reliability of such information is largely unknown. In this work, the consistency of individual behavior and dietary data collected by means of personal interviews during two study screenings was evaluated. Data were collected for a cohort of about 11,000 persons exposed to 131I in childhood and adolescence shortly after the Chernobyl accident. The best recollection was found for residential history, milk consumption patterns, and, to a lesser degree, stable iodine administration, while reproducibility of responses about consumption of milk products and leafy vegetables was poor. Consistency of information reported during the personal interviews by the study subjects younger than 10 y at the time of the accident was somewhat lower than for the subjects aged 10-18 y. The authors found slightly better reproducibility of responses for female study subjects than for male subjects and when the time span between two interviews was shorter. In the majority of instances, the best consistency in responses was observed when the mother was interviewed during both screenings rather than the subject. Information that was collected during two personal interviews was used to calculate two sets of thyroid doses due to 131I intakes. This study shows that, because dose-related measurements are available for all study subjects, the quality of individual behavior and dietary data has, in general, a small influence on the results of the retrospective dose assessment. For studies in which dose-related measurements are not available for all study subjects and only modeling is used for dose reconstruction, high quality individual behavior and dietary data for the study subjects are required to provide realistic and reliable dose estimates.