does DE cause cancer? - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 22 (permalink) Old 05-08-2011, 10:00 PM Thread Starter
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does DE cause cancer?

Does diatimatuous earth cause cancer?
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post #2 of 22 (permalink) Old 05-08-2011, 10:06 PM
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I doubt it as its in toothpaste..

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post #3 of 22 (permalink) Old 05-08-2011, 10:07 PM
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none that I know of. Don't breath it in your lungs. That's the only safety concern.


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post #4 of 22 (permalink) Old 05-08-2011, 10:11 PM
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In fish or people?
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post #5 of 22 (permalink) Old 05-08-2011, 10:12 PM
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here is the material safety data sheet on it...
http://www.sciencestuff.com/msds/C1668.html
edit: its a zero on health..and this MSDS is for pure DE...you're fine partner..

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post #6 of 22 (permalink) Old 05-09-2011, 12:11 AM Thread Starter
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I ment for a pool filter, but its all the same thing. my mother told me yes it is, and I just didn't understand how dirt can cause cancer, but I guess every thing causes cancer if u have enough of it.
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post #7 of 22 (permalink) Old 05-09-2011, 12:20 AM
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Quote:
Don't breath it in your lungs
If you did this on a regular basis you might get pneumoconiosis. That's the only thing I can think of. There isn't a huge difference between DE and sand. DE is different only in that it has a lot of sharp little points, which makes it useful for mechanically killing ground dwelling insects. It also has a smaller particle size, which means it becomes airborne more easily.
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post #8 of 22 (permalink) Old 05-09-2011, 12:28 AM
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From what I read, it soaks up oils, lipids really well. How it kill insects is it absorbs the lipids in the insects exoskeleton, causing the insect to dehydrate. It will dry out your hands too if you don't wear gloves.


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post #9 of 22 (permalink) Old 05-09-2011, 12:30 AM
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Pool filter grade diatomaceous earth has been heat and chemically treated and will poison an animal or human who ingests it.

Husband, kids, pugs, job, fish.... What's next?? Oh wait, how about Pugfish that earn $50,000 a year and will do all the housework!!! I can dream can't I???
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post #10 of 22 (permalink) Old 05-09-2011, 01:26 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fuzzyfoenix View Post
Pool filter grade diatomaceous earth has been heat and chemically treated and will poison an animal or human who ingests it.
What are you basing this on?

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post #11 of 22 (permalink) Old 05-09-2011, 01:28 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fuzzyfoenix View Post
Pool filter grade diatomaceous earth has been heat and chemically treated and will poison an animal or human who ingests it.
This.

If you are in fact talking about pool grade as opposed to food grade, then yes, pool grade DE can be carcinogenic and/or otherwise poisonous. The mere fact that a distinction exists between food grade anything or industrial grade anything is proof that industrial grade products are inferior. Usually, this refers to the facilities they are processed in, how clean the machinery or surfaces are required to be, that sort of thing. Is there a chance that industrial (pool grade) DE could be as clean or safe as the food grade? Sure, but I wouldn't want to take that chance. Pool grade DE could be processed in the same facility that manufactures PVC, for instance, which could lead to carcinogens finding their way into the DE.

That's just an example. But as far as food grade DE goes, no, it is not carcinogenic. There is even a recommended daily allowance for it, by the FDA. People swallow it to get rid of parasites and worms.
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post #12 of 22 (permalink) Old 05-09-2011, 05:55 PM
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Inhalation:
Causes dryness and irritation to the respiratory tract. Symptoms may include coughing, sore throat, breathing difficulty (dyspnea), and wheezing. Excessive inhalation may cause decreased pulmonary function, lung damage and silicosis. Acute silicosis is manifested by dyspnea, fever, cough and weight loss. Severe respiratory symptoms may lead to death.
Ingestion:
No adverse effects expected.
Skin Contact:
Causes irritation with dryness and abrasion.
Eye Contact:
Causes irritation, redness, and pain.
Chronic Exposure:
Prolonged inhalation exposure may produce silicosis. Chronic symptoms include cough, dyspnea, wheezing, increased susceptibility to tuberculosis, decreased chest expansion, and repeated nonspecific chest illnesses. Progressive respiratory and cardiopulmonary impairment may be fatal. Chronic inhalation of crystalline silica is a lung cancer hazard.
Aggravation of Pre-existing Conditions:
Persons with pre-existing respiratory or cardiopulmonary problems may be more susceptible to the effects of this substance.
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post #13 of 22 (permalink) Old 05-09-2011, 08:30 PM
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I always thought it had silicates in the soil that were harmful and remember saftey warnings on the filters and bags of earth, but it has been 7 or 8 years since I have purchased or handled any, so??? The only other thing I could say is that you could very easily get pneumonia from any fine powder, DE, pulverized lime, etc, by breathing the dust.


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post #14 of 22 (permalink) Old 05-10-2011, 12:18 PM
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Don't get me wrong. I'd would suggest anybody using something like this should take reasonable precautions. These risks:

Quote:
Originally Posted by johnny313 View Post
Inhalation:
Causes dryness and irritation to the respiratory tract. Symptoms may include coughing, sore throat, breathing difficulty (dyspnea), and wheezing. Excessive inhalation may cause decreased pulmonary function, lung damage and silicosis. Acute silicosis is manifested by dyspnea, fever, cough and weight loss. Severe respiratory symptoms may lead to death.
Ingestion:
No adverse effects expected.
Skin Contact:
Causes irritation with dryness and abrasion.
Eye Contact:
Causes irritation, redness, and pain.
Chronic Exposure:
Prolonged inhalation exposure may produce silicosis. Chronic symptoms include cough, dyspnea, wheezing, increased susceptibility to tuberculosis, decreased chest expansion, and repeated nonspecific chest illnesses. Progressive respiratory and cardiopulmonary impairment may be fatal. Chronic inhalation of crystalline silica is a lung cancer hazard.
Aggravation of Pre-existing Conditions:
Persons with pre-existing respiratory or cardiopulmonary problems may be more susceptible to the effects of this substance.
are pretty well identical to the risks of regular household dust. The MSDS on the DE lists health risks as minimal (0) and MSDS sheets are a reputable source of information. Nobody else listed a source for their info. Kind of reminds me of the dihydrogen monoxide scare

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post #15 of 22 (permalink) Old 05-11-2011, 07:27 AM
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I hope DE isn't too bad. It's the primary component of every mountain top in the area I live in. We've got so much of it here a good wind storm makes it look like it's snowing in the valley.
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