Chemicals in Everyday Items Linked to Infertility
Reported February 02, 2009
(Ivanhoe Newswire) — A group of chemicals used in many everyday items may be linked to infertility in women, a new study finds.
Researchers in Europe found women who had higher levels of perfluorooctanoate (PFOA) and perfluorooctane sulfonate (PFOS) in their blood took longer to get pregnant than women with lower levels. Perfluorinated chemicals (PFCs) like PFOA and PFOS are widely used in food packaging, pesticides, clothing, upholstery, carpets and personal care products. They remain in the environment and the body for decades.
To get their data, samples from 1,240 women were analyzed. PFOS blood levels ranged from 6.4 nanograms per milliliter (ng/ml) to 106.7 ng/ml, and PFOA levels from less than 1 ng/ml to 41.5 ng/ml. PFOS/PFOA blood levels were divided into four quartiles. Compared to women with the lowest levels of chemical in their blood, the likelihood of infertility increased by 70 to 134 percent for those in the higher three quartiles of PFOS and 60 to 154 percent for those in the higher three quartiles of PFOAs.
“As far as we know, this is the first study to assess the associations between PFOA and PFOS levels in plasma with time to pregnancy in humans,” Jorn Olsen, principle investigator and a professor and chair of the department of epidemiology at the University of California, Los Angeles, was quoted as saying. “We are waiting for further studies to replicate our findings in order to discover whether PFCs should be added to the list of risk factors for infertility.”
SOURCE: Human Reproduction, published online January 29, 2009