Parkinson’s Disease: Another Coming Epidemic

Dr Ray Dorsey, a neurologist at the University of Rochester, believes that we are on the tip of an iceberg. The prevalence of Parkinson’s has increased 35% in the last 10 years and may double in the next 25.

Trichlorethylene (TCE) may be the driver of this increase. It has been clearly established to be a carcinogen. Negative health effects were documented as far back as 1932 in the Journal of the AMA.

Exposure to TCE may predate symptoms of Parkinson’s by decades as it is stored in adipose tissue for life. About 30% of US groundwater is contaminated with TCE and drinking well-water is an important risk factor for the development of Parkinson’s.

TCE is still used in dry-cleaning, as well as products such as shoe polishes and carpet cleaners. Workplace exposure leads to a six-fold risk of developing Parkinson’s. It is banned by the European Union. Not so in the US where the EPA has established “safe” concentrations in drinking water. Minnesota and New York State recently prohibited its use. The EPA should follow suit.

Adapted from the Guardian, April 7, 2021.

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