Exposure To Forever Chemicals May Up The Risk Of Ovarian Cancer
PFAS has the power to disrupt hormone function in women and cause an imbalance in its production which may lead to cancer.
Written by Kinkini Gupta|Updated : September 23, 2023 12:47 PM IST
Forever chemical are found in a range of daily products that we use for instance food packaging, clothing, cosmetics, and toilet paper. They are very difficult to break down in the environment as well as in our bodies. This is why they have been termed as 'forever chemicals.' PFAS are resistant to heat water and grease. Needless to mention, they are harmful.
A new study published in the Journal of Exposure Science and Environmental Epidemiology; found that women who are exposed to high amount of PFAS are more at risk of developing ovarian cancer. The research was conducted by a team of experts who used data provided by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). PFAS are medically linked to causing cancers, but, for women, the chance of ovarian cancer is a lot higher than any other type. They have proved through this study that women who reported suffering from hormone driven cancers were highly exposed to certain PFAS.
About The Study
As mentioned earlier, the study is based on the data collected from CDC biomonitoring programme that was conducted between 2005 to 2018. It had included almost 10,000 people or even more. the study came up with certain research findings:
Women who were exposed to high amount of phenols (an organic compound present mainly in household products like food packaging and mouthwash) were later diagnosed with cancer.
The higher the exposure to PFDE, the higher the chances of melanoma. PFDE is a long chained compound of PFAS.
Scientists say that race may also play a role in this. Women of white skin were observed to be at higher risk of ovarian or uterine cancers if exposed to PFAS.
Whereas, non-white women may be at high risk of breast cancer if exposed to phenols and parabens.
Their conclusion is that, PFAS and PFDE is not directly causing cancer or increasing its risk but it is certainly playing a role in the development and progression of the disease. This aspect of forever chemicals requires more research.
Impact Of PFAS On The Body
According to the researchers, PFAS have the power to disrupt hormone function and balance in women. Poor hormonal health may be one major reason for hormone-related cancer development in the body.