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Effects of phthalic acid esters on fetal health.

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      Phthalates are synthetic industrial compounds capable of disrupting endocrine system. Effects of phthalates depend on dosage, duration of action and stage of development of the individual, thus making the fetus, newborn, and children at puberty the most vulnerable groups. METABOLISM OF PHTHALATES: Metabolism of these compounds consists of at least two steps: hydrolysis and conjugation. They are mainly excreted in urine, with a low percent being excreted through feces. EXPOSURE TO PHTHALATES: Exposure to the effects of phthalates begins at the intrauterine stage since the phthalates pass through the placental barrier. Phthalates may be found in plastic products, toys, medical equipment, industrial materials, food, and clothes. DETERMINATION OF PHTHALATE LEVELS IN HUMANS: Urine is the best sample for evaluating phthalate levels in humans because of rapid phthalate metabolism and high concentrations of metabolites in the urine. FETAL TESTICULAR DYSGENESIS SYNDROME: Fetal testicular dysgenesis syndrome involves disorders of male genital tract such as shortened anogenital distance, hypospadia, cryptorchidism, malformations of seminal vesicles, prostate, epididymis and it results from the harmful effects of phthalates. OTHER EFFECTS OF PHTHALATES ON HEALTH: Negative effects of phthalates on female health are mostly reflected in anovulation, premature puberty, changes in duration of pregnancy. There is a possible effect on neurocognitive development, occurrence of allergies, asthma, testicular carcinoma, hepatic and renal damages, insulin resistance and obesity, thyroid dysfunction.

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      Med. Pregl.
      Medicinski pregled
      : 67
      : 5-6


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