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Chlorinated Water Ups Risk of Birth Defects

Wednesday, 12 November 2008 17:37
A study of 141,077 children demonstrates that chlorinated water increases the risk of birth defects. Scientists poured through data on water quality and incidence of birth defects in 366 regions throughout Norway between 1993 and 1995. Overall, 1.8% of the newborns studied had birth defects. However, infants born in areas where water supplies were heavily chlorinated and had high levels of organic material were 14% more likely to have birth defects than babies born in areas with cleaner, less chlorinated water. This association was strongest for birth defects of the urinary tract. Specifically, babies born in regions with water supplies high in chlorine and organic material were twice as likely to experience this type of birth defect, compared with infants born in regions with less chlorinated water supplies.

Magnus P, Jaakkola JJK, Skrondal A, Alexander J et. al.   Water chlorination and birth defects   Epidemiology 1999 (Sep);   10 (5):   513-517