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Prenatal Exposures to PFAS Have Been Linked to Birth Defects

Posted on 21st October, 2020

by Legal Staff

The difficult-to-remove class of pollutants called PFAS, are hard to filter out and have entered the groundwater and drinking water supplies on military bases and in the surrounding communities.

Characterized by strong fluorine-carbon bonds, PFAS resist the typical forms of environmental breakdown and are considered non-biodegradable, and bioaccumulative.

According to the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry, studies in humans have shown that exposure to the family of chemicals that includes PFOA and PFOS may cause birth defects, premature deliveries, stillbirths, and problems with nervous system development.

During the early stages of development, the human fetus is vulnerable and relatively susceptible to impact from adverse conditions within the mother's environment. These synthetic chemicals can be absorbed by the mother through food or water and subsequently by the unborn baby via the placenta. Pregnant women living in or near areas that have been identified as having been contaminated with PFAS should take steps to minimize their exposure to these harmful chemicals.

The Toxic Foam Used to Put Out Aircraft Fires Has Been Linked to Developmental Delays for Fetuses, the Pentagon Has Found

Hundreds of military facilities where thousands of service members and their families lived and worked, have been contaminated with toxic fluorinated chemicals linked to an array of health problems, including functional abnormalities that occur during pregnancy such as birth defects and developmental damage to infants.

The water at or around at least 126 military bases across the U.S. has been found to be highly contaminated with PFAS chemicals, which have been linked to cancers and developmental delays for fetuses and infants. For instance, former Air Force officials believe contaminated water at the former Pease Air Force Base could have caused what they believe is an unusually high number of birth defects or still-born babies in the early 1980s.

Prenatal PFAS Exposure May Affect the Development of Unborn Babies

Ongoing exposure to PFAS in drinking water can lead to concentrations in the body high enough to potentially increase health risks. Studies have shown how highly fluorinated chemicals pass through the placenta and deposit to the embryo and fetal tissue.

Endocrine-disrupting chemicals such as PFAS can alter a baby's hormonal system by modifying or substituting natural hormones and interfering with cellular signaling. The accumulation of polyfluoroalkyl compounds in maternal tissue (e.g. placenta, umbilical cord blood, and mammary glands) is associated with serious health problems and the risk of premature illness later in life.

The weight of the evidence shows that prolonged exposure to certain contaminants, including PFAS, can affect a baby's well-being over time by causing subtle, but important changes in early development that can manifest later in childhood and adulthood, such as learning and cognitive disabilities, behavioral problems, and other neurologic disorders.

If PFAS Chemical Contamination Has Affected Your Health or the Health of a Family Member, Contact Atraxia Law Today

We advancing claims for compensation arising from PFAS contamination on a case by case basis, so each claim being comprehensive and constructed to each individual's particular loss and damage. Our team of experts have helped many individuals recover economic damages from companies who have manufactured or distributed unsafe products, including those who have suffered physical harm as a result of exposure to PFAS-based firefighting foam during military service by promptly connect them with the most suitable professionals. Call us today to discuss your PFAS contamination claim, for free, with one of our knowledgeable case managers.