Safe chemistry during pregnancy

17 Apr 2012  

Survey on exposures of pregnant consumers to endocrine disruptors
In a large-scale information campaign launched by the Danish Minister for the Environment and the Danish EPA, endocrine disruptors in relation to pregnancy have been given special attention. Exposure to endocrine disruptors before and during pregnancy is significant in terms of what the foetus could be exposed to.
Gravid med god kemi
DHI has supplied scientific advice
The information campaign is based on a scientific survey, in which DHI has contributed to the thorough investigation of endocrine disruptors. Substances selected for scrutiny included phthalates, various parabens and pesticides as well as Bisphenol A and Triclosan. A total of 35 substances were selected.

Found in consumer products
The selected substances can be found in products used by consumers worldwide in their everyday lives as well as in food and the indoor climate. The following eight product groups were chosen for further analysis: mobile covers, sleeping mats, working gloves, handbags of synthetic leather, rubber shoes, body lotions, sunscreens, and antibacterially treated clothes.

“Normally, a risk assessment is based on an estimate of exposure from a single substance from a single product”, Project Manager Dorthe Nørgaard Andersen informs. “The fact is that we are exposed to many different products on a daily basis and several of these contain the same chemical substances. This has been taken into account by making cumulative risk assessments”, Dorthe further explains.

What is the risk?
The survey concludes that most Danish pregnant women are expected to be exposed to a combination of the selected substances, but not at levels that give rise to concern. However, some pregnant women can, due to their consumption and behaviour, be exposed to a combination of potential endocrine disruptors in levels that give rise to concern. Furthermore, combined exposure must be taken into consideration when assessing the risk from exposure to endocrine disruptors.

More information
The survey has been carried out by DHI in collaboration with FORCE Technology and the Danish National Food Institute, DTU Food. As part of the information campaign, the Danish EPA has launched a web application with a lot of practical advice for pregnant women and consumers in general. The application can be accessed by PCs or cell phones. The webapp is only available in Danish.

A short summary and conclusions from the survey can be found on the Danish EPA’s webpage. Please see link in the menu to the right.

Want to know more ?

Dorthe Nørgaard Andersen

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