NIEHS Director Urges Study of Flame Retardant Threat to Pregnant Women

"The director of the national institute that oversees environmental health research said Monday that a new study raises many important questions about how flame retardants in common household items may pose a threat to the health of pregnant women and their infants.

The study published Monday reported that high levels of brominated flame retardants can alter pregnant women’s thyroid hormones, which are critical to a baby’s growth and brain development. It is the first human research showing a link between the ubiquitous chemicals and altered levels of the hormones in pregnant women.

'Clearly it is something that should be looked at further,' Linda Birnbaum, director of the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences, said in an interview with Environmental Health News. 'I think the change [in the women’s hormones] is probably real. It’s in agreement with other human studies in other [non-pregnant] adults and it’s the first study showing a pretty significant effect.'"

Marla Cone reports for Environmental Health News June 22, 2010.


Source: EHN, 06/22/2010