CDC/ATSDR PFAS Exposure Assessment Community Level Results

Moose Creek, Fairbanks North Star Borough, AK


PFAS EA participation Fairbanks North Star Borough Alaska 88 people participated 79 adults 9 children from 48 households

In 2019, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR) started exposure assessments (EAs) in communities near current or former military bases known to have had per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) in their drinking water. Individuals who participated in the EAs provided blood and urine samples to CDC/ATSDR for analysis. We sent letters with lab results to the participants. An example letter of the test results is available here pdf icon[PDF – 392 KB].

We are also reviewing additional information, like age and location, to better understand the community’s exposure. Once our full analysis is complete, CDC/ATSDR will host a community meeting to share our findings and recommendations.

The assessment focused on the area of Moose Creek, AK near Eielson Air Force Base. A map of the sampling area can be found at: assessments/sites/fairbanks-north-star-borough-ak.html

PFAS Levels in Blood

The lab tested participants’ blood for 7 different PFAS. PFAS levels are measured in micrograms per liter (μg/L).

CDC/ATSDR compared the levels of PFAS in participant’s blood across the community to the levels found in the U.S. population. Three PFAS (PFHxS, PFOS, PFOA) were detected above national averages. The levels of PFNA, MeFOSAA, PFUnA, and PFDA were similar to or below national averages.

Since 1999, the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) has measured PFAS levels in blood in the U.S. population. Most people in the United States have been exposed to PFAS and have PFAS in their blood.

PFAS levels. National Average vs Fairbanks North Star Borough.  PFHxS 1.2 vs 11.7. PFOS 4.7 vs 18.3.  PFOA 1.6 vs 2.1. PFNA .6 vs .3. PFDA .2 vs nondetectable PFUnA non detectable. MeFOSAA nondetectable vs .1.

The numbers below show the percentage of participants with PFAS levels above the national average.

Percent of Participants with elevated levels in Fairbanks North Star Borough. PFHxS 96%. PFOS 86%. PFOA 69%. PFDA 24%. PFNA17%.

PFAS Levels in Blood Compared to Other Studies**

PFOS levels.  National average (NHANES 2015/16) 4.7. Fairbanks North Star Borough 18.3. Other testing locations ranged 941 to 6.6

PFHxS levels National average (NHANES 2015/2016) 1.2. Fairbanks North Star Borough 11.7. Other testing locations ranged 180 to 3

PFOA levels. National average (NHANES, 2015/2016) 1.6. Fairbanks North Star Borough 2.1. Other testing locations ranged 899 to 1.5

Comparison studies references

PFAS Levels in Urine:

Most participants provided a urine sample, approximately 10% of the samples were analyzed. Averages were not calculated because no PFAS were detected in urine samples.

PFAS Levels in Tap Water:

CDC/ATSDR collected and tested tap water samples from 14 locations. PFAS levels in all alternative drinking water samples were below all federal and applicable state guidelines for PFAS in drinking water.

PFAS levels from two untreated wells not used for drinking water, were above the EPA lifetime health advisory for PFOA and PFOS combined.

PFAS Levels in Dust:

CDC/ATSDR collected and analyzed indoor dust samples from 14 locations. CDC/ATSDR is evaluating the dust sample results and will have more information in the final report.

About the Results:

CDC/ATSDR is evaluating data collected from the PFAS EA to better understand exposure in the community. The PFAS EA measures PFAS levels in people’s bodies but is not able to identify health effects associated with these levels of exposure. We are working to better understand health effects from PFAS exposure through the Multi-site Health Study

We are also reaching out to doctors, nurses, and other health care providers in your area to provide PFAS information. PFAS clinician guidance and continuing medical education can be found at icon.

For More Information:

Visit or contact: Rhonda Kaetzel, PhD, DABT Regional Director ATSDR Region 10 rkaetzel@cdc.govor 206-553-0530

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Page last reviewed: February 25, 2021