Fluoride Action Network


SUMMARY: The aim of this preliminary study was to compare the intelligence quotient (IQ) scores of 12–14 year old school children living in a high fluoride (F) village with the IQ scores of a similar group  of children in a low F village in the Davangere district, Karnataka, India. Sixty-five children from the one high school in the low F water village of Ajjihalli (F =  0.29 ppm) and 68 children from the one high school in the high F village of Holesirigere (F = 2.45 ppm) were selected by convenience sampling. Water F levels were estimated by the F ion selective electrode method. IQ scores were measured using Raven’s Standard Progressive Matrices test. Chi-square and Z tests were used for statistical analysis of data. In the high F village of Holesirigere the mean IQ score of the 68 children was lower (86. 3±12.8) than in the low F village of Ajjihalli, where the mean IQ score of 65 children was higher (88.8±15.3), but the difference was not statistically significant (p = 0.30). The number of children with IQ scores < 90 was 43/68 (63.2%) in high F Holesirigere and 31/65 (47.7%) in low F Ajjihalli, a difference that is nearly but not quite statistically significant (p = 0.06). The trend was toward lower IQ with high F water, even though these preliminary findings indicated that the F level in the drinking water was not significantly associated with IQ scores of  12–14 year old children in the high and low F villages.