Exposure to Toxic Environmental Agents

Exposure to Toxic Environmental Agents

ABSTRACT: Reducing exposure to toxic environmental agents is a critical area of intervention for obstetricians, gynecologists, and other reproductive health care professionals. Patient exposure to toxic environmental chemicals and other stressors is ubiquitous, and preconception and prenatal exposure to toxic environmental agents can have a profound and lasting effect on reproductive health across the life course. Prenatal exposure to certain chemicals has been documented to increase the risk of cancer in childhood; adult male exposure to pesticides is linked to altered semen quality, sterility, and prostate cancer; and postnatal exposure to some pesticides can interfere with all developmental stages of reproductive function in adult females, including puberty, menstruation and ovulation, fertility and fecundity, and menopause. Many environmental factors harmful to reproductive health disproportionately affect vulnerable and underserved populations, which leaves some populations, including underserved women, more vulnerable to adverse reproductive health effects than other populations. The evidence that links exposure to toxic environmental agents and adverse reproductive and developmental health outcomes is sufficiently robust, and the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists and the American Society for Reproductive Medicine join leading scientists and other clinical practitioners in calling for timely action to identify and reduce exposure to toxic environmental agents while addressing the consequences of such exposure.

via ACOG – Exposure to Toxic Environmental Agents.

[The hazards of toxic exposure go far beyond reproduction and prenatal development. Toxic exposures can affect all stages of human growth and development, but the earlier the exposure the more profound the risks and effects tend to be. The developing brain is particularly vulnerable. Numerous adverse emotional and behavioral consequences have been correlated with such exposures. –PR]

Stalking the big-brained baby

I have a hypothesis that the era of C-section baby deliveries could lead to the advent of a new big-brain phenotype.

Big-brained Baby?

Consider: the brain has been struggling to get bigger for about the last 100,00 years (since we reached anatomical modernity) but it can’t because we long-since reached the limits of brain & skull-case size that could fit through the human birth canal!

Of course, the birth canal will gradually get bigger–at maybe .1 cm per zillion years.

Meanwhile, enter the c-section. Now a fetus with an abnormally large brain case doesn’t have to get through the birth canal in one piece and unmangled anymore. Because of its delivery risks, discovered in prenatal monitoring,  it will routinely get a c-section and survive. More mothers who gestate big-brained babies will survive, too, possibly to have more big-brained babies (bbb’s)!

OK, so where are these bbb’s? Who knows! Nobody is looking for them!

We need to start systematically looking for these big-brained c-section babes in all the hospital delivery rooms. When we find them we need to get them into a controlled, double-blind research program designed as follows:

An equal number of big-brained and average-brained babies will all be given the same intervention and surveillance. The identities of which babies are bbb’s and which are average will be sealed in a vault for the duration of the study. All babies are treated exactly the same, but the treatment is very, very good.

No, we don’t take the babies away from their moms and hold them in an underground lab, but they go into a very enriched development program using all the latest neurodevelopmental enhancement methods. In other words, damn good schooling. That way they can all get the most consistent treatment throughout the program, which might last from 3 to 12 years, depending on funding. The parents would also be counseled and educated to promote the best possible development of the kids, and they would be paid lavishly so at least one parent won’t need to work and can be a dedicated and highly trained care-giver.

By rounding up these bbb’s and their moms and dads (figuratively) and giving them the best possible care, we accomplish some slight-of-hand eugenics: we help accelerate the emergence and proliferation of the bbb phenotype in the most benign way possible, but without that being an explicit objective.

Huh? Why not?

Poor Richard

Baby Big Head (click for source)

%d bloggers like this: