Toxic exposures from personal care products in women of childbearing age
Lieser, Amy Elizabeth
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A review of current literature suggests an association between the use of personal care products and adverse health outcomes. Significant levels of phthalates, parabens and lead have been detected in many cosmetics. Almost all humans tested have some level of phthalate, paraben and lead body burden. These three chemicals represent a few of the many chemicals prevalent in cosmetics. Human and animal studies link these chemicals with several negative health consequences including endocrine disrupting effects. A review of epidemiology reveals an increasing trend in the prevalence of associated health consequences. In the United States, the cosmetic industry is independently responsible for the safety of cosmetic products. The Federal government has regulatory oversight through the FDA, but does not have authority to test product safety. The Toxic Substance Control Act from 1976 and the Food, Drug and the Cosmetics Act of 1938 represent the most current legislation addressing regulatory standards for personal care products. Nurses advocate for legislation that protects public safety and intervene where public exposures to environmental health hazards are identified.