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New study finds lead, arsenic, other metals in tampon products


New study finds lead, arsenic, other metals in tampon products

Woman's hand holding a clean cotton tampon

A new study has found that tampons contain several metals, including arsenic and lead.

“Our findings point towards the need for regulations requiring the testing of metals in tampons by manufacturers,” the study says.

The study, which was published by Environment International on July 3, analyzed 30 tampons from 14 tampon brands and found they had measurable concentrations of the following metals:

  • Arsenic.
  • Barium.
  • Calcium.
  • Cadmium.
  • Cobalt.
  • Chromium.
  • Copper.
  • Iron.
  • Manganese.
  • Mercury.
  • Nickel.
  • Lead.
  • Selenium.
  • Strontium.
  • Vanadium.
  • Zinc.

“Although toxic metals are ubiquitous and we are exposed to low levels at any given time, our study clearly shows that metals are also present in menstrual products and that women might be at higher risk for exposure using these products,” said study co-author Kathrin Schilling.

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Metal exposure in tampons is ‘large potential for public concern’

According to a news release about the study, tampons “are of particular concern as a potential source of exposure to chemicals, including metals, because the skin of the vagina has a higher potential for chemical absorption than skin elsewhere on the body.”

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