Phthalates and Infertility - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

2/25/08

Phthalates and Infertility

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Could the same products that moisturize and protect your children's skin affect their fertility later? That question is the center of an ongoing debate over the potential health impact of chemicals used to make personal care products and plastics. 

Phthalates are a family of chemical compounds that soften plastic and help fragrances linger longer. Bisphenol-A makes plastics clear and strong and is also found in resins that coat the inside of cans used for food. Scientists say that some evidence suggests that these compounds may affect the developing reproductive system- at least that appears to be the case in animal studies.

Earl Gray, Ph.D., of the Environmental Protection Agency says, "In the rat, we know that in utero several of the phthalates disrupt the testes function in the male so that he produces lower levels of hormones." 

Sonya Lunder, M.S., of the Environmental Working Group said, "Quick simple things parents can do - use fewer body care products on their children."

No one knows yet the human impact of these chemicals. It's not easy figuring out which products contain the chemicals because they're not required on the label so they're usually not listed. But environmentalists like Lunder say if it's a fragrance, it usually contains phthalates and the letters PVC or the number 3.7 stand for bisphenol, which is also in canned food.

Meanwhile, in studies by the CDC, phthalates in the urine of 75% of people tested, and bisphenol was present in 95% of all the people tested.

For detailed information about phthalates and bisphenol-A you can visit:

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