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Hints of a Link Between Autism and Vinyl Flooring 356

SpuriousLogic sends in a link from Scientific American to a study by Swedish and US researchers that reaches the surprising conclusion that there may be a link between autism and vinyl floors. "Children who live in homes with vinyl floors, which can emit chemicals called phthalates, are more likely to have autism, according to research by Swedish and US scientists published Monday. ... The scientists were surprised by their finding, calling it 'far from conclusive.' ... The researchers found four environmental factors associated with autism: vinyl flooring, the mother's smoking, family economic problems, and condensation on windows, which indicates poor ventilation. Infants or toddlers who lived in bedrooms with vinyl, or PVC, floors were twice as likely to have autism five years later... than those with wood or linoleum flooring. ... Several scientists who did not participate in the study cautioned that it has too many limitations to draw conclusions, but they suggested that new studies be designed to look for a connection between autism and indoor air pollutants."

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