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Dioxin Health Effects: Thyroid Malfunction For The Next Generation


Dioxin health effects on the thyroid long-term

In 1976, a chemical factory accident in Seveso, Italy, exposed residents to dioxin or TCDD Over 15 square kilometers were covered with the TCDD form of dioxin, the most deadly form of a group of poisonous chemicals that includes Agent Orange.

These chemicals decompose extremely slowly, if ever, in the environment, and cause cancer in humans.

People worked to decontaminate the area, but there are still lingering dioxin health effects.

Now a new study finds that children born to women who lived in the contaminated have over six times more thyroid damage than those born to mothers not living in the contaminated area.

The researchers examined 1772 women from the dioxin contaminated area and the same number of women from an uncontaminated area.

These women had 1014 children between 1994 and 2005.

Researchers tested the thyroid secreting hormone (TSH) in the children’s blood.

Thyroid damage and dioxin contamination

In addition to finding six times more thyroid damage associated with living in contaminated areas, they also found a direct correlation between the children’s thyroid malfunction and the mother’s blood level of dioxin (Baccarelli, Neonatal thyroid function in Seveso 25 years after maternal exposure to dioxin, Plos Medicine, July 2008).

Thyroid malfunction may lead to reduced growth and brain development, including reduced intellectual development.

Dioxins are carcinogens

Dioxins not only persist in the environment, but also accumulate in the food chain.

They were declared a class 1 carcinogen (causing human cancer) by the World Health Organization 1n 1997.

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This page last updated by Sharon Jones.

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