Paraquat Legal Helpline℠

Highly Toxic Herbicide Linked to Parkinson’s Disease

Paraquat, used by farmers and agricultural workers to control weeds, has been linked to an increased risk of developing Parkinson’s disease, an incurable, progressive disorder of the central nervous system.

Exposure to Paraquat can affect farm and agricultural workers where the herbicide is used.

What is Paraquat?

Paraquat, which has been on the market since the early 1960s, has been banned by 32 countries in the European Union due to its toxicity. However, it is still widely used in the United States.

As far back as 1997, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) expressed concerns that Paraquat may cause Parkinson’s disease. The EPA classifies Paraquat as a restricted use herbicide, which can only be used by commercially-licensed applicators.

Why is Paraquat Dangerous?

Studies show that Paraquat can cause Parkinson’s disease, as well as a number of other serious health issues, including brain damage, permanent lung damage, kidney failure, heart failure, and other severe side effects.

Studies Show Link Between Paraquat and Parkinson’s Disease

  • 2009: Study reports 200 percent increase of developing Parkinson’s disease after exposure as a teen or young adult
  • 2011: A research study by the National Institute of Health confirms the risk
  • 2014: Study related to Environmental Toxins and Parkinson’s disease reveals Paraquat applicators have two times greater risk of developing Parkinson’s than the general population and indirect exposure within 1,600 feet of a home resulted in an up to 75 percent greater risk

Parkinson’s Disease

Over 60,000 people in the United States are diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease each year. The disease can cause debilitating symptoms that impact everyday movement and mobility.

According to researchers, certain nerve cells in the brain gradually break down or die, causing a loss of production of dopamine. This results in abnormal brain activity, leading to impaired movement and other symptoms.

Signs of Parkinson’s Disease

Parkinson’s disease can progress, getting worse over time. Symptoms varying from person to person. Signs include:

  • Tremors of hands, arms, legs, jaw, and face
  • Stiffness of arms and legs
  • Slowness of movement
  • Poor balance and coordination
  • Difficulty with speech

Compensation may be available for people who developed Parkinson’s disease after Paraquat exposure. Typical awards include past and future medical bills, past and future lost wages, compensation for permanent disability, pain and suffering, and emotional distress.

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