LivingThey warn that newborns are exposed to Bisferol-A and...

They warn that newborns are exposed to Bisferol-A and parabens in articles used in neonatal ICUs

An article published yesterday in the journal Environmental Health Perspectives, has revealed for the first time that admitted babies are exposed to harmful plastics, such as Bisferol-A (BPA), a substance banned by the European Union since 2011 in the manufacture of bottles, considering it harmful to the baby’s health.

From there, Dr. Nicolás Olea, a professor at the University of Granada and a doctor at the San Cecilio Hospital, started to carry out an investigation that has demonstrated the presence of Bisphenol A and parabens (PBs) in more than 50 articles that are commonly used in the Neonatal Intensive Care Units, such as ointments, dressings, sterile gloves, catheter or feeding tubes, in intimate contact with very low birth weight newborn babies during their hospital stay.

Without a doubt, a serious warning to heed.

60 percent of the analyzed articles contain BPA and 80 percent PBs

The multidisciplinary group of researchers from Granada has discovered that babies are inadvertently exposed to these plastics, through dermal, digestive, respiratory or intravenous exposure and has linked it to dysfunctions that lead to different diseases, both in the child and in in adults.

Among the objects analyzed are plastic syringes and tubes for intravenous administration of fluids or for parenteral nutrition, plastic tubes for nasogastric and enteral feeding, respiratory masks and endotracheal tubes and a varied spectrum of cardiopulmonary bypass circuits, dressings, bandages and electrodes.

They also analyzed other specific products for babies such as personal care items, textiles, diaper changers and mattress protectors and found that 60% of the selected objects contained BPA and 80%, PBs.

The highest BPA content was found in the three-way stopcock, followed by tape, the gastro-duodenal feeding tube, sterile gloves for use by professionals, the umbilical catheter, and the IV infusion extension set.

Urgent preventive measures are needed

This is confirmed by the researchers of this study, funded by the Carlos III Health Institute and the European Union, and which form a multidisciplinary team from the Virgen de las Nieves and Clínico San Cecilio de Granada university hospitals, from the University of Granada (UGR ), the Center for Biomedical Research (CIBM) and the Institute for Biosanitary Research ibs. Grenade.

Its main author, Nicolás Olea, explains the special care that newborns with low birth weight require:

“A complex care environment in a NICU, which tries to simulate uterine conditions until the correct development of immature skin and the functioning of the gastrointestinal, immune, nervous and respiratory systems”.

In the hospital, newborns undergo multiple techniques and procedures that include medical instruments and devices that come into intimate contact with their body, many of which are made of polycarbonate plastic, epoxy resins or PVC, in which substances as BPA is part of its structure or has been added to improve the characteristics of the product. The specialist adds:

“In addition, parabens are included as components of some plastics as preservatives and antimicrobials. They are also used in cosmetics, as well as in other consumer items. Both BPA and PBs can be released during the use of these materials, either due to polymer wear. plastic or by being subjected to favorable pH and temperature conditions for its release “.

Until now, there were only two studies that had addressed the exposure of neonates in the NICU to these chemical compounds. They discovered an increase in the concentrations of BPA in the urine of the children, related to a greater frequency and intensity in the use of these medical devices; in fact, they reached values up to 30 times higher than those of the rest of the general population.

They also described higher levels of CPs in hospitalized newborns in relation to increased drug use, although no other possible sources of exposure had been identified, as in this latest investigation.

The authors have indicated that it is urgent to implement preventive measures for exposure to these compounds , which include both changes in clinical protocols and the use of materials free of endocrine disruptors.

At present, the researchers involved are already working on new procedures to reduce the exposure of these children to the different environmental factors in which their stay in the hospital unfolds and that could interfere with their normal development.

Via | The vanguard

Photos | iStock

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