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Water Consumption and Use, Trihalomethane Exposure and the Risk of Hypospadias

Iszatt, Nina*; Nieuwenhuijsen, Mark J.*†; Toledano, Mireille B.*; Nelson, Paul; Elliot, Paul*

doi: 10.1097/01.ede.0000362931.08938.9f
Abstracts: ISEE 21st Annual Conference, Dublin, Ireland, August 25–29, 2009: Poster Presentations

*Imperial College London, London, United Kingdom; †Center for Research in Environmental Epidemiology (CREAL), Barcelona, Spain; ‡Municipal Institute of Medical Research Foundation (IMIM), Barcelona, Spain; §Center for Biomedical Investigation Network of Epidemiology and Public Health (CIBERESP), Barcelona, Spain; and ¶Phrisk Ltd, London, United Kingdom.

Abstracts published in Epidemiology have been reviewed by the organizations of Epidemiology. Affliate Societies at whose meetings the abstracts have been accepted for presentation. These abstracts have not undergone review by the Editorial Board of Epidemiology.


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Background and Objective:

Hypospadias is a common urogenital congenital anomaly affecting up to 90 per 10,000 males. Exposure to trihalomethanes (THMs) has been associated with other congenital anomalies such as urinary tract and neural tube defects. We examined the relation between exposure to THMs and hypospadias in a large case-control study.

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471 cases of hypospadias and 490 randomly selected population-based controls in the south east of England were interviewed by telephone. Questions included demographics of the mother and father, family history of disease, pregnancy history, diet, including vitamin intake, smoking, alcohol use, occupation, water consumption, bathing, showering, dish washing and swimming. Information on THM concentrations at residence was obtained from the water companies and linked using a Geographical Information System (GIS).

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Our results suggest that water consumption may be associated with increased risk of hypospadias. THM concentrations in tap water and duration of showering, bathing and dishwashing did not show associations with hypospadias.

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Water consumption may be associated with risk of hypospadias, but there was little evidence for an association with THMs. Further work is needed to investigate maternal exposure to other DBPs.

© 2009 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.