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Infertile Couples Have Higher Exposure to Phthalates

Environmental Health News,  Feb 22, 2012

Infertile couples are exposed to three to five times higher levels of phthalates compared to fertile couples who have naturally conceived a child, finds a study from Italy. The couples had higher levels of four different classes of phthalates in their urine, including the phthalate compound most commonly used in plastics and the compound most commonly used in cosmetics.In this study, 56 couples who sought help to conceive a child from an assisted reproduction center in Italy, and 56 couples who conceived at least one child naturally, donated urine samples that were analyzed for phthalate concentrations. The scientists measured the levels of four different phthalates and their breakdown products in the urine of all of the participating couples. Levels of all four phthalates and their breakdown products were significantly higher in both infertile men and women compared to the fertile men and women.

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