A research conducted by French doctors has revealed that those children who are exposed to head lice shampoos and insecticides run a higher chance of contracting childhood leukaemia. The Occupational and Environmental Medicine journal has published this report. The study has cautioned against exposing children to mosquito repellents also.
The France based Inserm had conducted the study upon 280 children. Extensive interviews were carried out with mothers of such children. The chances of acute leukaemia was found to be higher in the case of mothers who had used insecticides inside the house while they were pregnant. The carbamates compound which is present in products like insect sprays and lice shampoos are reportedly directly connected to leukaemia.
The carbamates which are most commonly used in the UK are carbosulfan, carbofuran and carbaryl. A government committee has already given a warning with regard to products which contain carbaryl. Leukaemia is in effect a cancer of the blood cells. There are about 500 children in the UK who are diagnosed with the disease every year, among whom about 100 die.
Male children run a greater chance of contracting this disease than female children. The disease usually develops in the womb, and it is later triggered during childhood. Studies are still being conducted to determine as to whether this is due to dietary, environmental, or genetic conditions.