Navigation Links
BPA Tied to Impotence in Men

Chinese factory worker study suggests more potential hazards from the plastics chemical

WEDNESDAY, Nov. 11 (HealthDay News) -- Exposure to high levels of the controversial plastics chemical bisphenol A (BPA) significantly raised the risk of sexual dysfunction, including impotence and low sex drive, among Chinese factory workers, a new study has found.

The researchers stressed that the workers were exposed to BPA levels about 50 times higher than what most Chinese or Americans would be exposed to in everyday life.

Even so, they said the study adds to a growing body of research that shows that the ubiquitous chemical may be harmful to humans. BPA, used to make polycarbonate plastic (hard, clear plastic) and epoxy resin, is found in electronic and medical equipment, cars, sports safety equipment, and food and drink containers, including plastic bottles and the lining of cans.

"We found that male workers who had high exposure to BPA in the workplace had a much higher risk of male sexual dysfunction compared to other workers in the same city who were matched for age and other factors," said lead study author Dr. De-Kun Li, a reproductive and perinatal epidemiologist at Kaiser Permanente's Division of Research in Oakland, Calif. "A caveat here is those workers did have a much higher BPA exposure than most Americans or Chinese in the general population."

The study is published in the Nov. 11 online edition of Human Reproduction.

In the study, Li and colleagues examined 230 workers in four Chinese factories near Shanghai that either manufactured BPA or used BPA to manufacture epoxy resin. The men worked as packagers, technical supervisors, laboratory technicians and maintenance workers.

The workers were compared to 404 workers in factories that made products ranging from textiles to machinery, in which there was no heightened BPA exposure. The workers from the two groups were matched by age, education, gender and employment history.

Workers in the BPA factories were four times more likely to report erectile dysfunction, reduced sexual desire and overall dissatisfaction with their sex life. They were also seven times more likely to have ejaculation difficulties.

BPA workers were also more likely to report reduced sexual function within one year of beginning employment at the factory, the researchers found.

Researchers measured BPA exposure levels by taking air samples, reviewing factory records and interviewing workers about personal hygiene habits, use of protective equipment and exposure to other chemicals. Levels of BPA in the urine was also tested for a subset of workers.

Among BPA workers, the higher the exposure, the more likely they were to have sexual difficulties.

Most human exposure to BPA occurs when the chemical leaches into food and drink from packaging. Earlier this month, Consumer Reports announced that tests showed BPA in nearly all of 19 brand-name canned foods, including soups, juice, tuna and green beans.

In recent years, concern about the effects of BPA, particularly on fetuses and young children, have been growing. Animal studies have shown that BPA can cause reproductive abnormalities in both males and females by disrupting the endocrine system, according to background information in the study.

Other research has linked BPA to an increased risk of diabetes, cancer and heart arrhythmias. Male sexual dysfunction may be an early indicator of BPA-related problems that take longer to develop, Li said.

One chemicals industry representative took issue with the findings. Steven Hentges, executive director of the American Chemistry Council's Polycarbonate/BPA Global Group, said the occupational exposure of these factory workers far exceeds what the average person would ingest. Furthermore, the study did not make clear if the factories or the workers were following adequate worker-protection measures, such as wearing gloves and face masks and having proper ventilation.

"It is important to note that the study has little relevance to average consumers who use products that contain trace levels of BPA," said Hentges.

Dr. Hugh Taylor, director of the division of reproductive endocrinology and infertility at Yale University School of Medicine, said the findings are "very suggestive" but do not prove cause and effect.

"The results of the study are probably important for people who are working at BPA factories, but the results don't support condemning BPA based on what people are exposed to at normal levels," Taylor said.

Yet Taylor recommends that pregnant women and children in particular avoid BPA. Well-controlled animal studies have shown the chemical is linked to reproductive harm that may be irreversible during critical stages of development. In response to such concerns, some countries have banned the sale of baby bottles made with BPA.

"The totality of the literature suggests BPA has terrible consequences for human health," Taylor said. "I tell my patients to stay away from hard plastics and canned goods while pregnant."

More information

There's more on bisphenol A at the U.S. National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences.

SOURCES: De-Kun Li, M.D., Ph.D., reproductive and perinatal epidemiologist, division of research, Kaiser Permanente, Oakland, Calif.; Hugh Taylor, M.D., professor and director, division of reproductive endocrinology and infertility, Yale University School of Medicine, New Haven, Conn.; Steven Hentges, Ph.D., executive director, Polycarbonate/BPA Global Group, American Chemistry Council, Arlington, Va.; Nov. 11, 2009, Human Reproduction

Copyright©2009 ScoutNews,LLC.
All rights reserved

Related medicine news :

1. Impotence, Incontinence Risk Casts Doubt on High-Tech Prostate Surgery
2. Spider Venom -- The Next Way to Treat Impotence?
3. Multimedia Release: British Men Think Talking About Impotence is "Just Not Cricket"
4. Pro-Medics Launches Its New Line of Male Impotence Treatment Products
5. Impotence Drugs Dont Harm Vision: Study
6. Motorcycle Seats NOT The Cause of Impotence or Erectile Dysfunction for Bikers
7. Men Who Smoke Prone to Impotence
Post Your Comments:
(Date:6/26/2016)... ... June 26, 2016 , ... Many women are confused ... endometriosis. These women need a treatment plan to not only alleviate symptoms and ... help for preservation of fertility and ultimately achieving a pregnancy. The specialists at ...
(Date:6/25/2016)... ... , ... "With 30 hand-drawn hand gesture animations, FCPX users can easily customize ... Pixel Film Studios. , ProHand Cartoon’s package transforms over 1,300 hand-drawn pictures into ... Simply select a ProHand generator and drag it above media or text in the ...
(Date:6/25/2016)... (PRWEB) , ... June 25, 2016 , ... On Friday, ... presented a Bronze Wellness at Work award to iHire in recognition of their exemplary ... part of the 7th annual Maryland Workplace Health & Wellness Symposium at the BWI ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... June 24, 2016 , ... June 19, 2016 is World Sickle Cell Observance ... and the benefits of holistic treatments, Serenity Recovery Center of Marne, Michigan, ... Disease. , Sickle Cell Disease (SCD) is a disorder of the red blood cells, ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... June 24, 2016 , ... Dr. Amanda ... orthodontic treatment. Dr. Cheng has extensive experience with all areas of orthodontics, including ... accelerated osteogenic orthodontics. , Micro-osteoperforation is a revolutionary adjunct to orthodontic treatment. ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:6/23/2016)... , June 23, 2016 , ... on Thursday, July 7, 2016 , , , , LOCATION: ... , , , , EXPERT PANELISTS:  , , , ... Senior Industry Analyst, Christi Bird; Senior Industry Analyst, Divyaa Ravishankar and ... The global pharmaceutical industry is witnessing an exceptional era. ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... and BOGOTA, Colombia , June 23, 2016  Astellas today announced the establishment of Astellas Farma ... as the company,s second affiliate in Latin America . ... ... Astellas Farma Colombia ... ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... 23, 2016  Guerbet announced today that it has ... Horizon Award . One of 12 suppliers ... for its support of Premier members through exceptional local ... and commitment to lower costs. ... of our outstanding customer service from Premier," says ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: