Consumer product exposures associated with urinary phthalate levels in pregnant women

Jessie P. Buckley, Rachel T. Palmieri, Jeanine M. Matuszewski, Amy H. Herring, Donna D. Baird, Katherine E. Hartmann, Jane A. Hoppin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

138 Scopus citations


Human phthalate exposure is ubiquitous, but little is known regarding predictors of urinary phthalate levels. To explore this, 50 pregnant women aged 18-38 years completed two questionnaires on potential phthalate exposures and provided a first morning void. Urine samples were analyzed for 12 phthalate metabolites. Associations with questionnaire items were evaluated via Wilcoxon tests and t-tests, and r-squared values were calculated in multiple linear regression models. Few measured factors were statistically significantly associated with phthalate levels. Individuals who used nail polish had higher levels of mono-butyl phthalate (P = 0.048) than non-users. Mono-benzyl phthalate levels were higher among women who used eye makeup (P = 0.034) or used makeup on a regular basis (P = 0.004). Women who used cologne or perfume had higher levels of di-(2-ethylhexyl) phthalate metabolites. Household products, home flooring or paneling, and other personal care products were also associated with urinary phthalates. The proportion of variance in metabolite concentrations explained by questionnaire items ranged between 0.31 for mono-ethyl phthalate and 0.42 for mono-n-methyl phthalate. Although personal care product use may be an important predictor of urinary phthalate levels, most of the variability in phthalate exposure was not captured by our relatively comprehensive set of questionnaire items.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)468-475
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Exposure Science and Environmental Epidemiology
Issue number5
StatePublished - Sep 2012


  • biomonitoring
  • personal care products
  • phthalates
  • pregnancy
  • urine

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Epidemiology
  • Toxicology
  • Pollution
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


Dive into the research topics of 'Consumer product exposures associated with urinary phthalate levels in pregnant women'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this