Hypertension during pregnancy can be very dangerous and even life threatening. A new study‘s results were published in  Environmental Health Perspectives and found an association between chemicals found in stain-resistant fabric and high blood pressure during pregnancy. 

The chemicals involved in the study were perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) and perfluorooctane sulfonate (PFOS).

Blood levels of 1330 pregnant women were tested for PFOS and PFOA because of their proximity to DuPont’s Washington Works factory. A pregnant woman’s increased levels of PFOA and PFOS were associated with increased odds of experiencing “pregnancy-induced” hypertension.

For every log unit increase of PFOS, the mother’s odds of hypertension increased 47 percent. For every log unit increase of PFOA, odds increased by 27 percent.

Perfluorooctane sulfonate used to be produced by 3M and used in Scotchgard. That was phased out over ten years ago, but remains the predominant PFC in our environment. Perfluorooctanoic acid is used in Teflon, but it is also on the path to being being phased out. Other studies have found PFOA to be linked to preeclampsia and PFOS has been linked to reduced fertility in both men and women, as well as ADHD symptoms in little ones.