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Dangerous PCBs (polychlorinated biphenyls) in buildings

On the 18th July 2018 the documentary „Das vergessene Gift – wie PCB uns alle belastet“ (“The Forgotten Poison – how PCB weighs on us”) was shown on German television. It is particularly important for you if you live or work in a building built between 1955 and 1978.

PCB load in buildings – public institutions, schools but also private residential buildings are affected

PCBs (polychlorinated biphenyls) are poisons that are still dangerous even after 30 years. In buildings, it has been used as a plasticiser and flame retardant in particular in expansion / connection joints, filling / potting compounds and in paints and resins. It can also be found in cable sheathing and fluorescent lamps. The danger arises from the great affinity for fatty tissue. PCB is stored and the body can hardly detoxify it.

Possible health consequences and symptoms caused by PCB

Numerous health effects are associated with PCB:

  • Weakness
  • Change of skin and nails
  • Hair loss
  • Change of blood parameters
  • Impairment of the early childhood immune system
  • Thyroid effects
  • Liver changes
  • Diabetes
  • Cancer
  • Neurotoxicity.

Source: PCB Wirkungen auf den Menschen (2013, Prof. Dr. med. Thomas Eikmann Institut für Hygiene und Umweltmedizin UKGM - Universitätsklinikum Gießen und Marburg Justus-Liebig-Universität Gießen

How can you protect yourself from PCB?

As explained in the documentation mentioned above, we recommend the minimization of PCBs as they add up.

In order to determine whether a PCB load is present, a dust or material measurement is suitable. An air measurement is significantly more expensive and is relevant at the workplace or in schools and kindergartens. Suitable support is provided by appropriately trained construction consultants or experts.

If there is a load, the cause (if identified) should be eliminated or shut off. In laboratory experiments, the outstanding and long lasting (more than 9 years) masking effect of BASKO products against PCBs has been proven.

In case of ambiguity and individual questions, we are happy to advise you.

Your LIVOS-team