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Congenital anomalies and proximity to landfill sites.The occurrence of congenital anomalies in proximity to municipal landfill sites in the Eastern Region (counties Dublin, Kildare, Wicklow) was examined by small area (district electoral division), distance and clustering tendancies in relation to 83 landfills, five of which were major sites. The study included 2136 cases of congenital anomaly, 37,487 births and 1423 controls between 1986 and 1990. For the more populous areas of the region 50% of the population lived within 2-3 km of a landfill and within 4-5 km for more rural areas. In the area-level analysis, the standardised prevalence ratios, empirical and full Bayesian modelling, and Kulldorff's spatial scan statistic found no association between the residential area of cases and location of landfills. In the case control analysis, the mean distance of cases and controls from the nearest landfill was similar. The odds ratios of cases compared to controls for increasing distances from all landfills and major landfills showed no significant difference from the baseline value of 1. The kernel and K methods showed no tendency of cases to cluster in relationship to landfills. In conclusion, congenital anomalies were not found to occur more commonly in proximity to municipal landfills.