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Working in extreme heat can double stillbirth risk - Study
Working in extreme heat can double stillbirth risk - Study
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Working in extreme heat can double stillbirth risk - Study

Working in extreme heat can double the risk of stillbirth and miscarriage for pregnant women, according to new research from India.

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The study found that the risks to mothers-to-be are significantly higher than previously thought.

Researchers say hotter summers can affect not only women in tropical climates, but also in countries such as the UK.

They want specific health advice for working pregnant women globally.

Eight hundred pregnant women in the southern Indian state of Tamil Nadu took part in the study, which was started in 2017 by the Faculty of Public Health at the Sri Ramachandra Institute of Higher Education and Research (SRIHER) in Chennai.

About half of those who took part worked in jobs where they were exposed to high levels of heat, such as agriculture, brick kilns and salt flats. The others worked in cooler environments, such as schools and hospitals, although some workers were also exposed to very high levels of heat in those jobs too.

There is no universal threshold for what level of heat is considered to be too hot for the human body.

"[The impact of heat] is relative to what you're used to and what your body's used to," says Prof Jane Hirst, one of the scientists who contributed to the study.

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