Common Household Substance Linked to Parkinson’s Disease

Posted on November 18, 2011

The news website Fair Warning reports that a chemical found in common household products, as well as a contaminant in groundwater, has been linked to Parkinson’s disease (PD) in a new study.

Published in the Annals of Neurology, the study looked at 99 sets of twins in which one of the twins suffered from Parkinson’s disease, a neurological disorder that is progressive and causes uncontrollable shaking. The study was conducted by the Parkinson’s Institute and Clinical Center (PI) in Sunnyvale, California, and after evaluating both of the twins’ exposure to environmental settings, researchers found that the twin who worked around or was exposed to trichloroethylene (TCE) had six times the risk of developing the disease. Other solvents have been linked to Parkinson’s, including perchloroethylene (or PERC) and carbon tetrachloride (or CCI4).

How does one encounter these hazards?

TCE is found in dry-cleaning and carpet solutions, adhesives, paints, and as a grease remover for industry. The U.S. EPA (Environmental Protection Agency) has declared it a human carcinogen, but because of its extensive use it is found in up to 30 percent of drinking water in the U.S., as well as soil and air. Even if you don’t work around these chemicals, you are exposed through common household products such as carpet cleaners, paints, glues, and spot removers. Millions of pounds of these solvents are still released into the environment each year.

The study researchers caution against making a direct link between chemical exposure and Parkinson’s disease and say the results need to be replicated in other studies, though environmental exposure has long been thought to be linked to PD. The product liability lawyers in Jacksonville of Farah & Farah can help if you have been injured or become ill due to a dangerous or defective product. Please call (800) 533-3555 for a free consultation.


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