Posted on March 05th, 2021
The incidence of Parkinson's disease increased significantly in 30 years from 1990 to 2020, and we know why - if we just pay attention to what the epidemiological evidence is telling us. In recent decades, a flood of scientific research has confirmed that paraquat may cause the onset, or accelerate the development, of Parkinson's.
Universally recognized as one of the most dangerous and highly toxic chemicals in the world, paraquat was widely used as an herbicide, primarily for weed and grass control. In the 1980s, the federal government used paraquat to destroy illegal marijuana cultivation, even though the poison had been banned from national forests because of environmental concerns.
The most notorious public health issue linked to the rapidly-acting, nonselective herbicide paraquat, is the growing scientific evidence linking the herbicide to Parkinson's disease.
The First Link - The suspicion that pesticides might increase the risk of developing gene-specific and sporadic Parkinson's disease incidences was first theorized in the 1980s following a wave of drug-induced Parkinson's-like illnesses.
While some epidemiological studies and animal data linking Parkinson's disease with herbicides like paraquat have been inconsistent at first, convincing evidence is continually emerging that demonstrates paraquat exposure greatly increases the risk of developing Parkinson's disease.
While the Environmental Protection Agency of the United States did not find "sufficient evidence" of the paraquat's adverse health effects, the herbicide has already been banned in many countries, including Brazil, Cambodia, Kuwait, and the EU nations. Even China, the world's largest manufacturer of paraquat, started phasing out the chemical in 2012. In 2017, Parkinson's organizations in the national, state, and regional levels sent a letter to the EPA urging them to ban paraquat because of its substantial and demonstrated risks.
Although often assumed that the development of Parkinson's disease is influenced by genetic factors, studies have shown that genetics is the primary contributor to only 10% of Parkinson's disease cases. Scientists now know that exposure to chemicals in pesticides and herbicides is the major cause of Parkinson's disease.
Workers who used paraquat or entered fields after the herbicide had been applied and bystanders exposed to spray drift may have suffered injuries as a result of toxic exposure. We help people with Parkinson's disease and their families to seek legal relief from the chemical manufacturers of paraquat who were allegedly aware of the health risks associated with the herbicide and failed to ensure that workers received adequate protection against the potential side effects of paraquat.
If you were exposed to the herbicide paraquat and have since developed Parkinson's disease, please contact Environmental Litigation Group, P.C. today. Our team of experts has filed claims on behalf of those who have been affected by this dangerous chemical. We'll help you explore your legal options and guide you through the process from start to finish.