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Monday, 1 December 2008

Hairspray exposure may increase birth defect risk of baby boys

Scientists have found preliminary evidence that exposure to hairspray during the first three months of pregnancy increases the risk of a common genetic deformity in baby boys. The team found that the risk of hypospadias - a defect in which the urinary opening forms on the underside of the penis - increased from 4 in 1,000 boys to 9.6 in 1,000 when the mother was exposed to hairspray during her work. The team also found that folic acid, which mothers are advised to take during early pregnancy to avoid neural tube defects, seems to prevent hypospadias. Taking the supplement led to a 36% decrease in risk.
Read article in The Guardian (UK)

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