Artificial turf linked with rare cancers

Six former Philadelphia Phillies players, who played their home careers on the rug at Veterans Stadium, died of a rare brain cancer. Turf is better than it used to be (and Philly’s turf was notoriously bad), but it’s all made of some nasty chemicals, and a connection is unproven, but at least plausible. The Guardian had pieces of the Vet turf tested which found 16 different types of toxic PFAS chemicals.

I would be less concerned about football, which has 6-8 home games instead of 81, but when practices on turf are included they have plenty of exposure as well.

Glad we got rid of the rug and went to cow food at RRS, but WMS is still a rug. And the rubber crumbs that hold up the blades of the WMS turf are also chock full of nasty chemicals. The turf at the Vet was old school and didn’t have the crumbs; other types of modern turf use sand instead of rubber to support the blades.

This story cites original reports by the Philly Enquirer and NY Times, both linked but behind a paywall.

Can’t imagine all the chemicals they put on that grass to make it look so pretty, or chemicals in the paint. Chemicals are everywhere. Wonder what those jerseys are washed in?

I saw a story or a study that questioned this but don’t ask me where I saw it. I’m not saying the above is incorrect. Just saying it probably needs more studying.

Chemicals in the plastics - chemicals used to keep the grass growing and green. Yuck.

I have always considered myself lucky to not have spent time living near a petroleum processing plant.

When I lived in Tulsa, the refinery odors would waft over the Arkansas river toward my house just off of Riverside. Yuck.

Lived in Beaumont TX for a year and a half; the Chamber of Commerce types call that the Golden Triangle, but I thought the Toxic Triangle was more appropriate. Lamar U, which I attended to get PA school prerequisites, was less than a mile from a bunch of chemical plants, and it smelled like it. Of course, as with paper mills in Camden, Pine Biuff, Ashdown, etc., the retort is “yeah, it smells like money.”

would likely have to be volatiles from sun heating the turf and releasing gases that were inhaled. Exposure as such on a baseball field would be much, much higher than for football. If true, would that extend to artificial turf playgrounds that kids play on year round? kids would be more vulnerable due to the plasticity of their brain cells.

I would agree, and I suspect that solar heating would indeed tend to release some of the nasty stuff. The good news is that kids wouldn’t usually be on that rug for 3+ hours at a time, unlike an MLB game.

We just know more now. I suspect if aspirin were discovered today and put through the FDA process, it would fail because of the risks of gastric bleeding and Reye syndrome. But we’ve kinda learned to deal with that, and of course it’s commonly recommended in low doses as a mild blood thinner.

many mainstays of anesthesiology would never pass FDA regs because of known/common side effects.

I smirked with the smell of money comment because I surveyed rivers below paper mill plants in grad school to make living money. I brought my New Orleans friend/fellow grad student surveyor up through Pine Bluff and the mill was particularly fragrant and actually woke Keith up and he just smiled and said smell of money. Those were the good old days

Perhaps there are other common issues, such as living in Philly, playing the Braves, using steroids, etc., and chewing tobacco as noted in the story.

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