Pesticides claim one life and sickens 129 others as people desperate to get rid of bed bugs use the outdoor toxins in their BEDROOMS

By  Daily Mail Reporter

PUBLISHED: 20:58 EST, 28 November 2012 |  UPDATED: 20:58 EST, 28 November 2012


No one likes bed bugs. But in recent years as the infestation rate explodes people are increasingly poisoning themselves in an attempt to get rid of the unwelcome house guests.

Over a 4 year period, 129 people suffered mild to serious health issues when outdoor pesticides were used inside, according to a health advisory issued by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry.

Symptoms of  pesticide poisoning can include headache, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea,  dizziness and muscle tremors.

bed bug Reports of bed bug infestations have risen annually since 2006


The effects are so toxic one woman even died.

The unidentified 65-year-old North Carolina woman had a history of heart and kidney problems and became ill after  using the pesticides.

She and her husband went through nine cans of insecticide fogger, a separate kind of canned pesticide for their house’s walls and baseboards, and yet another type for the mattresses and box springs.

They reapplied everything to the mattresses and box springs just two days later, then went through another nine cans of yet another fogger.

Before she fell ill, the woman even put a flea and bedbug pesticide on her arms, sores on her chest, and her hair.

Two days after her second pesticide application she was found unresponsive by her husband.

She lingered in the hospital for nine days before passing away.

bed bug Read before you spray: CDC officials are asking people to be sure their pesticides are approved for indoor use after a rash of poisonings

‘Many people are somewhat desperate to find any solution,’ Bernadette Burden, a CDC spokeswoman, told NBC News. ‘This is something they’re not used to. Oftentimes, they’re tempted to use any insecticide that they can get their hands on.’

Bedbug victims with less tragic ends include Melissa Constantinou, 25, a personal  chef in Lowell, Mass..

Her  apartment was treated for infestation four times with Constantinou ever once worrying about the possible health effects.

‘Oh my gosh, it’s so emotionally  disturbing,’ she said. ‘I was willing to do whatever it took. I didn’t  think about the long-term effects at all.’

According to the National  Pesticide Information Center, inquiries about bedbugs nearly  doubled between 2007 and 2011, leading health agencies to view the issue as ‘an emerging national  concern.’

Especially as bedbug infestations have been on the rise.

bed bug Not in my bed: People often spray their homes multiple times over a short period to treat infestation

First-time service calls for bed bug treatment went from about 100 requests a month in January 2008 to roughly 300 per month by April 2012 according to a survey conducted by Jeff White,  technical director of the website BedBug Central.

‘Outdoor pesticides should not be used indoors under any circumstances,’ ATSDR officials warn.

The problems come from people using too much pesticide or applying it incorrectly.

‘A lot of them don’t understand that the label is the law,’ said David Stone director of the NPIC. ‘This product should not be applied  directly to the skin. That product should not be used on mattresses.’

In one example recorded by the CDC, an Ohio family – including four children and a roommate – became ill after an uncertified pesticide company used malathion to treat their apartment.

That pesticide is not registered for indoor use, but the crew used it so much they saturated the beds and floor coverings.

CDC experts said people should be careful to read the labels before using a pesticide indoors.

‘More importantly, follow the guidance  and make sure you’re using the right pesticide and that you’re treating  the right pest,’ said the CDC’s Burden, who noted that bedbugs often can resemble other critters at different stages in their life cycle.

Exposure to insecticide may play role in obesity epidemic among some women: DDE, DDT

Contact: Jason Cody
Michigan State University

Researchers study fish-eater cohort along Lake Michigan

EAST LANSING, Mich. — Prenatal exposure to an insecticide commonly used up until the 1970s may play a role in the obesity epidemic in women, according to a new study involving several Michigan State University researchers.

More than 250 mothers who live along and eat fish from Lake Michigan were studied for their exposure to DDE – a breakdown of DDT. The study, published as an editor’s choice in this month’s edition of Occupational and Environmental Medicine, analyzed DDE levels of the women’s offspring.

Compared to the group with the lowest levels, those with intermediate levels gained an average of 13 pounds excess weight, and those with higher levels gained more than 20 pounds of excess weight.

“Prenatal exposure to toxins is increasingly being looked at as a potential cause for the rise in obesity seen worldwide,” said Janet Osuch, a professor of surgery and epidemiology at MSU’s College of Human Medicine, who was one of the lead authors of the study. “What we have found for the first time is exposure to certain toxins by eating fish from polluted waters may contribute to the obesity epidemic in women.”

Though DDT was banned in 1973 after three decades of widespread use, the chemical and its byproducts remain toxic in marine life and fatty fish. The study was funded by a $300,000 grant from the federal Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry.

Osuch said the study’s findings can have a huge impact on how researchers treat – and seek to prevent – obesity. The research team has been awarded a $1 million grant from the same federal agency, the ATSDR, to assess the impact of pollutants and toxins on a wide variety of disorders by determining the importance of second- and third-generation health effects.

“This line of research can transform how we think about the causes of obesity and potentially help us create prenatal tests to show which offspring are at higher risks,” she said.

The mothers who were studied are part of a larger cohort of Michigan fish eaters along Lake Michigan who were recruited in the early 1970s. In 2000, Osuch and research partners approached the cohort and began to identify daughters aged 20 to 50 years old.

“These findings not only apply to the offspring of women in our cohort but to any woman who has been exposed to high levels of DDE when she was growing in her mother’s womb,” Osuch said. “Mothers with the highest DDE levels are women who have consumed a lot of fish or high-fat meats.”

Current recommendations for eating fish call for limiting it to two meals per week; including tuna fish sandwiches. The study also looked at the effects of a second pollutant, PCBs, but found no correlation with weight and body mass index.


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