Skip to main content


eCommons@Cornell >
College of Veterinary Medicine >
Breast Cancer and Environmental Risk Factors >
Fact Sheets >

Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item:
Title: Breast Cancer and the Estrogen Connection; Dump and Drain Web Article
Authors: Snedeker, Suzanne M.
Keywords: environmental estrogen
breast cancer
laundry detergent
dish soap
heavy metals
Issue Date: May-2008
Publisher: Cornell University Program on Breast Cancer and Environmental Risk Factors
Abstract: This web article provides information on how you can learn more to keep environmental estrogens found in detergents and electronics out of our common environment. Researchers are concerned that even at low levels, environmental estrogens we are exposed to may work together with the body’s own estrogen to increase the risk of breast cancer. Dump and Drain Issues: Certain chemicals used as surfactants in detergents to get the dirt out go down the drain and during wastewater treatment break down to form environmental estrogens called nonylphenol and octylphenol. While these surfactants are banned in Europe, they are still used in many products (household and industrial detergents, and paints) in the U.S. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) detected octylphenol in about 50% of the urine samples from Americans in a study published in 2005. Certain heavy metals have been identified as environmental estrogens as well. Many of these heavy metals, like cadmium, nickel and lead, are found in electronics you may use and can end up in landfills. This handout tells you how you can choose detergents that do not contain ingredients that are estrogenic, and how you can reuse, recover, and recycle electronics to prevent heavy metals from getting into our environment.
Description: Web article on environmental estrogens found in detergents and electronics
Appears in Collections:Fact Sheets

Files in This Item:

File Description SizeFormat
WebArticle_Dump_Drain_Estrogen_Connection.pdfWeb Article on environmental estrogens; Dump and Drain issues385.14 kBAdobe PDFView/Open

Refworks Export

Items in eCommons are protected by copyright, with all rights reserved, unless otherwise indicated.


© 2014 Cornell University Library Contact Us