on Jun 20, 2012 @ 11:31 pm|
This is scary chicks !! From ABC website:
Exposure to trace amounts of baby soaps and shampoos,
commonly stocked in grocery stores and pharmacies across the county,
are leading newborn babies to test positive for THC, the active
ingredient in marijuana, a new study finds.
A hospital in North Carolina became concerned recently when a high
number of its newborns tested positive for marijuana exposure. When
researchers began looking into it, they found the culprit was chemicals
found in baby soaps, including those manufactured by Johnson &
Johnson, Aveeno and CVS brand products.
Dr. Catherine Hammett-Stabler, lead study author at the University of
North Carolina, Chapel Hill, said that at first researchers were unable
to pinpoint what was causing the urine tests to come back positive for
"We went up to the nursery, followed the nurses and the staff around to
identify everything that was done, everything that was essentially
touching those babies' skins, could possibly come into contact with the
urine that we were subsequently testing," she told ABC News. "We were
really surprised when we found it was the soaps were the culprit."
Mixtures of drug-free urine and various commercial products and
materials that commonly contact newborns were used in the study, according to the abstract published by the National Center for Biotechnical Information.
The study ultimately found that certain chemicals found in these soaps
and shampoos -- including polyquarternium-11 and cocamidopropyl betaine
-- can trigger the positive THC results.
Products that led to the false positives included Johnson &
Johnson's Bedtime Bath, CVS Night-time Baby Bath, Aveeno Baby Soothing
Relief Creamy Wash and Aveeno Baby Wash & Shampoo.
The researchers said they believe that trace amounts of the chemicals --
0.1 milliliters or less -- were coming from the soaps, washing off the
babies' bodies, and finding their way into the urine samples used for
Testing newborns for marijuana is fairly routine, especially in
situations where the mothers are considered high-risk. Dr. Carl
Seashore, a co-author of the study, told Time magazine that one of the
reasons to conduct the research was to ensure that no mothers were
"[The researchers] do not want to be falsely accusing anybody. They want
to correctly identify situations that need additional intervention or
social services actions for the protection of the baby," Stabler told
Dr. John Spangler, an associate professor of family and community
medicine at Wake Forest University School of Medicine in Winston-Salem,
N.C., agreed that more discriminating tests are needed.
"This has profound implications," Spangler said in an email to ABC News.
"Think about being a mother who knows she has never been exposed to
illicit drugs. How does she fight against the supposed 'objective' lab
Spangler cited mothers who had been arrested based on tests of their babies, but insisted that they had never smoked marijuana.
"On the one hand, we must screen babies' urine to protect them from
harmful environments, such as households where drugs are used," he said.
"On the other hand, this study makes clear that such screens are
plagued by known and unknown factors that can result in false
Researchers who conducted the University of North Carolina study said
that labs need to be aware of this potential source for false positive
screening results, and understand that "sources of error are not
confined to the laboratory walls."
They also said that the research demonstrates the need for active
involvement in the "total testing process" to reduce false results and,
in some cases, needless legal action.
ABC News Radio contributed to this report.