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Chemicals in furniture could cause infertility


Will you look at your old table or curtains the same way after knowing that scientists have household products to contain chemicals that can cause infertility?

A study has found that flame retardant chemicals found in some furniture causes delay and difficulties in women becoming pregnant. The study, conducted by UC Berkley, found that women with high levels of the chemicals, called polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs), were between 30 and 50 percent less like to conceive every month than women with low levels, the New York Daily Post reports.

University of Berkley Professor Kim Harley said: “When the analysis was limited to women who were actively trying to become pregnant, we found that they were half as likely to conceive in any given month if they had high levels of PBDE in their blood.

“We aren’t looking at infertility, just sub-fertility, because all the women in our study eventually became pregnant.

“Had we included infertile couples in our study, it is possible that we would have seen an even stronger effect from PBDE exposure.”

Professor Harley added that it is suspected PBDEs affect the levels of sex hormones, which then affected the chances of falling pregnant, reports.

These chemicals were reportedly common in furniture from the 1970s, including carpets, electric appliances, sofas and plastics. The Telegraph reports these chemicals are inhaled and are then stored in the fat cells.

While many of these chemicals are no longer in common use, we still need to be aware we will probably be affected by them for a long time, Professor Harley says.

“PBDEs are present in many consumer products, and we know they leach out into our homes. In our research, we have found that low-income children in are exposed to very high levels of PBDEs, and this has us concerned about the next generation.”

That’s not even mentioning the new chemicals in new products out on the market, of which, Professor Harley says, we know even less.

Several celebrities have had fertility problems, and reverted to treatments, including IVF and Artificial Insemination.

Celebrities who have had IVF include Octomom.


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