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Journal of Occupational & Environmental Medicine:
Practice Guidelines

Pregnancy Outcome of Personnel in Swedish Biomedical Research Laboratories

Wennborg, Helena MD; Bodin, Lennart PhD; Vainio, Harri MD; Axelsson, Gösta MD

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Abstract

Possible hazardous effects of laboratory work on the reproduction outcomes of female laboratory personnel in Sweden from 1990 to 1994 were investigated in a questionnaire-based study (n = 1052) by comparison with personnel in non-laboratory departments. The individual woman constituted the primary sampling unit, with her pregnancies defined as the unit of analysis. Allowance for dependence between different pregnancies of the same woman was considered by applying random effect models. With regard to spontaneous abortions, no elevated odds ratio was found for laboratory work in general, but an odds ratio of 2.3 and a 95% confidence interval of 0.9 to 5.9 (n = 856) was connected to working with chloroform. The odds ratio for large for gestational age infants in association with the mother’s laboratory work was 1.9 (confidence interval, 0.7 to 5.2). The result with regard to spontaneous abortion partly supports previously reported increased risks of miscarriage related to laboratory work with solvents.

© 2000 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.

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