Common Solvent Causes
Birth Defects

Toluene embryopathy is characterized by microcephaly; central nervous system dysfunction; attention deficits and hyperactivity; developmental delay with greater language deficits; minor craniofacial and limb anomalies; and variable growth deficiency.  Previously, three affected children, born to women who inhaled toluene regularly through pregnancy, have been reported.  Two more cases are described, emphasizing the importance of toluene as a potential human teratogen.

(Toluene is a common solvent in art materials, found in lacquer thinners, silk screen inks, adhesives, spray products, etc.  This report reinforces the need for pregnant women to avoid using products containing toluene unless they are used with local exhaust ventilation. - Ed.)
The preceding abstract was reprinted with permission from Section 35, Occupational Health and Industrial Medicine, of Excerpta Medica.    

Toluene embryopathy: Two new cases. - Hersh J.H., - Child Evaluation Center, Department of Pediatrics, University of Louisville, Louisville, KY 40202 USA - J. MED GENET. 1989 26/5 (333-337).

Art Hazard News, Volume 12, No. 6, 1989

This article was originally printed for Art Hazard News, © copyright Center for Safety in the Arts 1989. It appears on nontoxicprint courtesy of the Health in the Arts Program, University of Illinois at Chicago, who have curated a collection of these articles from their archive which are still relevant to artists today.