Senator Boscola Proposes Bill to Inform Patients of Dehp Risks in Medical Devices

Senator Boscola Proposes Bill to Inform Patients of DEHP Risks in Medical Devices

Senator Lisa Boscola said today that she will be introducing a bill that would require licensed medical facilities in Pennsylvania that use IV bags and other medical devices made with Diethylhexyl Phthalate (DEHP) to officially tell patients about their use and the known risks that come with this toxic additive.

Her plan also calls for slowly getting rid of DEHP IV bags and tubes, starting with patients who are very sick (like those in NICUs, pediatrics, or cancer).

“My bill is very important for patient safety because a lot of research has shown that DEHP can be very bad for your health, especially for people who are already at a high risk,” Boscola said. “My plan gives Pennsylvania the chance to lead the way in lowering the use of harmful chemicals in medical devices across the country.” It makes me happy that health services in eastern Pennsylvania back me up.

“We don’t use IV solution containers with PVC or DEHP at St. Luke’s, and we support Senator Lisa Boscola’s work to make sure all patients in the Commonwealth are similarly protected from these harmful chemicals forever,” said Dr. Jeffrey Jahre, Senior Vice President of Medical and Academic Affairs at St. Luke’s University Health Network.

Phthalates are a group of chemicals that are added to some plastics to make them more flexible and less likely to break. DEHP is one of these chemicals. Up to 40% of the weight of some medical items, like IV bags and tubes, can be DEHP.

These additives leach out in different amounts, which is a problem because a lot of study shows that exposures during important stages of development can stop testosterone production and stop men from developing normally reproductively. Studies have also shown that DEHP may make it harder for drugs to work against breast cancer cells, which can make treatment less effective and increase the chance of a return.

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