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Disturbing Discovery Of Microplastic Particles Inside Women's Placenta

Disturbing Discovery Of Microplastic Particles Inside Women's Placenta

For the first time, researchers have found microplastic particles in women's placenta after they gave birth. These microplastics particles have been detected both on the fetal and maternal sides of the placenta and in the membrane in which the fetus develops.

Microplastics are small pieces of plastic that are less than five millimeters long and can be harmful to our oceans and aquatic life. Microplastics come from a variety of sources, including larger plastic debris, which degrades into smaller and smaller pieces.

The researchers of the study found 12 microplastic fragments in four placentas from a study of six that were donated by women after the birth of their child. Only 3 percent of the placenta donated was sampled, suggesting that the total microplastic parts could actually be much higher.

In general, the invisible contaminants have been found in water and wastewater ranging in size from 5 to 20 microns (1mm equal to 1000 microns), which means that they are sufficiently small to be conveyed in the circulation system.

According to research, all the particles were found in placentas were plastics that have been dyed blue, red, orange, or pink and may have originated from packaging, paints or cosmetics, and personal care products.

Women involved in the study had no problems with their pregnancy and the effects on their babies are not known, but experts fear that plastics chemicals may interfere with their development.

Dr. Antonia Ragusa, head of obstetrics and gynecology at the San Giovanni Calibita Fatebenefratelli emergency clinic in Rome, was astonished when he saw microplastics in the placenta, adding that if something is found in the placenta, it is also found in the baby.

Dr. Antonia also added, "it resembles having a 'cyborg babies' who incorporated plastic parts into their bodies."

In the study, published in the journal Environment International, the researchers concluded, "due to the crucial role of the placenta in promoting the development of the fetus and acting as an interface with the external environment, the presence of potentially harmful microplastic particles is a matter of great concern. Further studies need to be conducted to assess whether the presence of microplastics can trigger immune responses or lead to the release of toxic contaminants resulting in harm."

The potential effects of microplastics on fetus include reduced fetal growth, according to scientists, adding that the particles have not been found in the placentas of two other women involved in the study, which may be the result of a different diet, physiology, or lifestyle.

Microplastic pollution has reached every part of the planet, from the top of Mount Everest to the deepest oceans. According to researchers, there is an urgent need to take stock of the issue, especially for infants, as people are already known to consume and breathe small microplastic particles through food and water.

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