Highlights of the Child-Specific Exposure Factors Handbook (Final Report)

EPA announced the release of the final report, Highlights of the Child-Specific Exposure Factors Handbook. As a "highlights" document, this is a companion report to the Child-Specific Exposure Factors Handbook (Final Report) EPA released in 2008. This highlights document provides some introductory information about the handbook and presents a summary of the recommendations presented in the Child-Specific Exposure Factors Handbook (CSEFH). The CSEFH handbook presents behavioral and physiological data on various factors used in assessing exposure, specifically for children ages 0 to 21 years old. This document was first offered to the public in 2002 as a tool to exposure assessors for assessing childhood exposures to environmental agents. Since that time, the U.S. EPA has incorporated updated data, revised the recommendations for several exposure factors, and developed a standardized set of age categories to be used for children’s exposure assessment.

We invite you to view the full report Child-Specific Exposure Factors Handbook (Final Report), see downloads. EPA intends to update this website periodically so that the information remains current and relevant.

Children have different exposure circumstances than do adults. Understanding these differences is key for evaluating potential for environmental hazards from pollutants. They consume more of certain foods and water and have higher inhalation rates per unit of body weight than adults. Young children play close to the ground and come into contact with contaminated soil outdoors and with contaminated dust on surfaces and carpets indoors. Ingestion of human milk is another potential pathway of exposure for infants and young children. The handbook focuses on presenting the best available, scientifically sound information on children’s exposure factors.

The aim of the handbook is to improve the characterization of the potential environmental health risks to children by accounting for life stage differences in exposure. The handbook contains summaries of selected studies published through July 2008. Where possible, the U.S. EPA has used the standard set of age categories recommended by the Agency to permit easier comparison of data among multiple sources and to allow consistency between different types of exposure factors.


This report is a stand-alone document that highlights the recommendations from the exposure factors handbook.


U.S. EPA. Highlights of the Child-Specific Exposure Factors Handbook (Final Report). U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Washington, DC, EPA/600/R-08/135, 2009.


Date Description
01-Sep 2008EPA released the final report, Child-Specific Exposure Factors Handbook (CSEFH).
02-Oct 2009EPA released the companion report, Highlights of the Child-Specific Exposure Factors Handbook.

This document has been reviewed in accordance with U.S. Environmental Protection Agency policy and approved for publication. Mention of trade names or commercial products does not constitute endorsement or recommendation for use.