ALLERGY, RESPIRATORY
Overweight Moms More Likely to Have Asthmatic Kids
Herbal Remedy Could Halt Peanut Allergy
Asthmatics Who Quit Smoking May Reverse Lung Damage
ALTERNATIVE MEDICINE
Indian Spice May Thwart Liver Damage
No Verdict Yet on Grape Seed Extract vs. Breast Cancer
Traditional Chinese Therapy May Help Ease Eczema
ANIMAL CARE
Rest Easy. When It Comes to Swine Flu, Your Pet Is Safe
'Comfort Dogs' Come to Emotional Rescue
Beware of Dog Bites
BONES & JOINTS
Backpack Safety Should Be on Back-to-School Lists
Bone Density Predicts Chances of Breast Cancer
Gene Plays Key Role in Clubfoot
CANCER
Study Suggests Link Between Cell Phones and Brain Tumors
Smoking Exposure Now Linked to Colon, Breast Cancers
Meditation May Reduce Stress in Breast Cancer Patients
CAREGIVING
Depression, PTSD Common Among Lung Transplant Patient Caregivers
3 Steps Might Help Stop MRSA's Spread
Children's Bath Products Contain Contaminants
CIRCULATORY SYSTEM
Walk 100 Steps a Minute for 'Moderate' Exercise
Anemia Rates Down for U.S. Women and Children
Common Antioxidant Might Slow Parkinson's
COSMETIC
Mouse Study Finds Molecule That Tells Hair to Grow
The Acne Drug Accutane More Than Doubles Depression Risk
Study Evaluates Laser Therapies for Hair Removal
DENTAL, ORAL
Mom's Vitamin D Levels Affect Baby's Dental Health
A Sweet Way to Shield Baby's Teeth
Periodontal Disease Impacts Whole Health
DIABETES
Findings Challenge Tight Glucose Control for Critically Ill Patients
Vitamin K Slows Insulin Resistance in Older Men
Americans Consuming More Sugary Beverages
DIET, NUTRITION
Is Coffee Good or Bad for Your Health?
Iced Teas Pose High Risk of Kidney Stones
Adults Need To Get Thier Food Facts Straight
DISABILITIES
Could Your Cell Phone Help Shield You From Alzheimer's?
Review Finds Marijuana May Help MS Patients
ENVIRONMENTAL HEALTH
Walkable Neighborhoods Keep the Pounds Off
Most Mt. Everest Deaths Occur Near Summit During Descent
Are Medical Meetings Environmentally Unfriendly?
EYE CARE, VISION
When Corks Fly, Watch the Eyes
Green Tea May Ward Off Eye Disease
Eye Care Checkups Tied to Insurance Status
FITNESS
Research Confirms How Valuable A Healthy Lifestyle Can Be
As Temperature Plummets, It's Still Safe to Exercise
Tai Chi and Qigong Offer Many Health Benefits: Review
GASTROINTESTINAL PROBLEMS
New Yogurt May Ease Stomach Ulcers
Peppermint Oil, Fiber Can Fight Irritable Bowel
HRT Use Raises Risk of Stomach Trouble
GENERAL HEALTH
The Juice From Beetroots May Boost Stamina
Smog Tougher on the Obese
Daylight Savings: Not a Bright Time for All
HEAD & NECK
Many Children Will Outgrow Headaches
Zen May Thicken Brain, Thwart Pain
Ski Helmets Encouraged for All
HEALTH & TECHNOLOGY
'Comfort Dogs' Come to Emotional Rescue
Imaging Sheds Light on How Acupuncture Works
Study Suggests Link Between Cell Phones and Brain Tumors
HEARING
Noise Hurts Men's Hearing More, Study Shows
Summer Sounds Can Lead to Hearing Loss
HEART & CARDIOVASCULAR
Risk Factor for Stroke More Common Among Whites
Too Much Red Meat May Shorten Life Span
Laughter Can Boost Heart Health
INFECTIOUS DISEASE
Older Adults May Have Some Immunity to Swine Flu
Bacterial Infections May Succumb to Honey
Surgical Masks Could Prevent Flu, Maybe
INFERTILITY
Obesity May Affect Fertility in Young Womene
KID'S HEALTH
Gene Variation Found in Boys With Delinquent Peers
Most Depressed Teens Don't Get Treatment
Protect Your Kids From Swine Flu While at Camp
MEN'S HEALTH
More Vitamin C May Mean Less Chance of Gout
Vigorous Exercise Cuts Stroke Risk for Men, Not Women
Sunlight May Help Protect Men From Kidney Cancer
MENTAL HEALTH
Eight Spiritual Universal Principles in the Art of Practice
Have a Goal in Life? You Might Live Longer
Brain Scans Show How Humans 'Hear' Emotion
PAIN
Are We Exercising Pain Away? Not So Much.
Acupuncture, Real or Fake, Eases Back Pain
'Cell Phone Elbow' -- A New Ill for the Wired Age
PHYSICAL THERAPY
PREGNANCY
Expectant Mom's Exercise Keeps Newborn's Birth Weight Down
Before Conceiving, Take Folic Acid for One Full Year
Acupuncture May Relieve Acid Indigestation In Pregnancy
SENIORS
Want Better Health in the New Year, Add Exercise to Your Day
Martial Arts Training May Save Seniors' Hips
Healthy Diet Could Cut Alzheimer's Disease Risk
SEXUAL HEALTH
SLEEP DISORDERS
6 to 8 Hours of Shut-Eye Is Optimal for Health
Better Sleep, Grades Seem to Go Up
Sleeping Could Help Women Lose The Baby Fat
WOMEN'S HEALTH
Postmenopausal Women With Breast Cancer Face Joint Issues
Active Young Women Need Calcium, Vitamin D
Sleeping Could Help Women Lose The Baby Fat
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Plastics Chemical Tied to Aggression in Young Girls

(HealthDay News) -- In the latest study to suggest an association between the plastics chemical bisphenol A (BPA) and adverse effects on humans, researchers report that BPA may affect the behavior of little girls.

Girls exposed to higher levels of BPA displayed more "externalizing" behaviors, such as aggression and hyperactivity, according to the study, which is published in the Oct. 6 online edition of Environmental Health Perspectives.

"We found almost all of the women [in the study] had detectable levels of bisphenol A in at least one of the tests, and elevated concentrations were associated with externalizing behaviors in female children," said study author Joe Braun, a graduate student and research assistant in epidemiology at the Gillings School of Global Public Health at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

Not everyone agreed with the study's conclusions, however.

"This type of study has no capability to establish cause and effect, only associations. At the end of the study, the authors even point out that the results 'should be viewed cautiously,'" noted Steven Hentges, executive director of the polycarbonate/BPA global group at the American Chemistry Council, which represents the chemicals industry.

BPA is a commonly used chemical that's found in hard plastics and epoxy resins. The chemical is used in water bottles, food containers, infant bottles and medical devices. BPA may also be found in the lining of canned foods. Most human exposure comes through diet when the chemical leaches into food and beverages from the containers, according to the U.S. National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences. Previous studies suggest that more than 90 percent of people in the United States have detectable levels of BPA in their urine.

Animal studies of the chemical have found an association between BPA and adverse neurodevelopmental effects on fetuses and newborns, according to background information in the study.

The current study included 249 pregnant women from Cincinnati, Ohio, who were part of another study that was evaluating interventions to reduce lead levels. Urine samples were collected when the mothers were 16 and 26 weeks pregnant, as well as within 24 hours of birth.

Ninety-nine percent of the women had at least one urine sample with detectable levels of BPA, according to the study.

The children's behavior was reported by the parents using a standardized questionnaire when the children were 2 years old.

After controlling the data to account for numerous possible confounding factors, such as maternal age, race, education and income levels, the researchers didn't find an association between BPA and externalizing behaviors. However, when they split the data by sex, they noted an association between higher BPA levels and more externalizing behaviors in girls.

Braun said that the researchers don't know why there was a difference in the findings by sex, nor did they know what the potential biological mechanism might be that could cause an increase in aggressive behaviors after BPA exposure.

The researchers did not adjust the data in this study to account for lead exposure, diet or after-birth exposure to BPA. Braun said that the researchers did test additional statistical models to account for lead exposure that weren't included in the paper, and he said that when this was done lead levels didn't change their findings.

However, "once you consider the limitations of the study, as the authors carefully do, there's significant potential for false positives," contended Hentges.

Braun said that parents who are worried about the potential for harm can look for products that specify that they're "BPA-free." He said the chemical is found in many different consumer products and there are no requirements that it be listed on a label, so if a product doesn't clearly state that it doesn't contain BPA, it may be made with the chemical. One known source of BPA is plastics with the number 7 in the recycling symbol.

SOURCES: Joe Braun, M.S.P.H., graduate student, research assistant, department of epidemiology, Gillings School of Global Public Health, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, N.C.; Steven Hentges, executive director, polycarbonate/BPA global group, American Chemistry Council, Arlington, Va.; Oct. 6, 2009, Environmental Health Perspectives, online Published on: October 06, 2009