Subject: Birth defect rate appears higher here

Date: May 27, 1976


MDNEWS- May 27,1976 Birth Defect Rate Appears Higher here

State health department officials recognized Midland County's reported rate of defects a year ago the highest among populous Michigan counties.

Pressed by the Daily News for a fuller accounting, the department returned to the birth certificates and divided the physicians diagnoses into minor and major categories of birth defects.

Based on this analysis, Dr. Gerald Rice, chief of the personal health services bureau concluded that "the apparent increase in particular years is due to increased reporting of minor deformities."

However. Dr. Peter Infante, a National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) researcher in Cincinnati, Ohio, said the state's work had failed to establish that.

Dr. William Flynt, chief of the birth defects branch of the Center for Disease Control (CDC) in Atlanta,Ga., the other national research expert contacted, generally concurred with the state.

Among the MINOR DEFECTS are 34 cases of male genital organ defects - a rate about five times the state's reported incidence - that includes 21 incidences of undescended testes or water filled scrotum that are not always true birth defects
Other MINOR DEFECTS are 12 slight heart murmers of unknown origin; nine instances of webbed or deformed toes; and 10 of minor skin or muscle defects.

The serious defects include four heart murmers accompanied by blueness; fourteen orthepedic deformities including club feet and incompletely developed limbs; six defects of brain and nervous system; seven cases of Mongoloidism; 15 CLEFT PALATE OR CLEFT LIPS; and six multiple deformities.

MDNEWS-Nov. 27,1984- State rejects study of local birth defects.

In the nineties I asked the Midland County Health director about Midland birth defects. The state did a review. Have you seen it?
If not you should. I believe that it raises a lot of questions, especially now that we know even more about dioxin's health effects.

Diane Hebert

Source: Diane Hebert

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