Research shows that the presence of children in the home did not motivate parents to test and mitigate for radon and secondhand smoke, highlighting the need for awareness of exposure risks.

Luz Huntington-Moskos, PhD, RN, CPN, UofL School of Nursing assistant professor, recently published the findings in the journal Public Health Nursing. The two-year study was funded by a $210,000 supplemental grant from the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences as part of a broader study led by University of Kentucky College of Nursing Professor Ellen Hahn, PhD, RN, FAAN.

Hahn’s study Freedom from Radon Exposure and Smoking in the Home (FRESH) Dual Home Screening for Lung Cancer Prevention gave about 550 participants test kits to measure radon and secondhand smoke levels in their homes. Based on the test results, participants received tailored interventions designed to reduce environmental risks for lung cancer.

Huntington-Moskos analyzed data collected from Hahn’s study, focusing on whether parents with children 18 and younger living in the home were concerned about lung cancer risk and the dangerous combination of radon and secondhand smoke.

“This was an opportunity to see if parents are thinking about their child’s long-term exposure to radon and secondhand smoke in the home,” Huntington-Moskos said. “We found that having children present in the home doesn’t appear to impact parents’ lung cancer worry.”

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