DDT and health effects on children

Current issue of On Earth (Winter 2008), an article by Kim Larsen about fighting malaria in Africa, “Bad Blood”:

DDT can interfere with the feedback loop in the pituitary gland, which releases the milk-producing hormone prolactin. Studies show that exposure to DDT at critical points in pregnancy or just after childbirth can reduce the output of breast milk, or even dry it up. In such instances the mother will turn to formula, which is expensive. And in Africa formula feeding often leads to another death sentence for babies: diarrhea (infants have no immunity to the microbes that abound in contaminated drinking water throughout much of the continent). Here, then, exposure to DDT may cause as swift and bleak an outcome as exposure to a mosquito.

On Earth is a publication of the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC).

2 Responses to DDT and health effects on children

  1. Ed Darrell says:

    I wonder how Trinidad is using DDT — as a health measure? Outdoor spraying of the stuff is probably stupid for any reason. Is that really what they’re doing?


  2. chris says:

    It seems that the banning of DDT is not known by health authorities in Trinidad as up to this morning I am again awaken by its nasty smell.


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