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Diana K Haggerty, Kristen Upson, Diana C Pacyga, J Ebba Franko, Joseph M Braun, and Rita S Strakovsky

Women are ubiquitously exposed to non-persistent endocrine disrupting chemicals (EDCs) from food contact materials and personal care products. Understanding the impacts of exposure to these chemicals on pregnancy and long-term health outcomes in women is a critical area of research that has been largely overlooked. This brief review focuses on the epidemiologic literature exploring associations of non-persistent EDCs – including phthalates, parabens, bisphenols, and triclosan – with maternal pregnancy outcomes and long-term health outcomes in women. We focus on the challenges of this research, particularly assessing non-persistent EDC exposures, aspects of study design, and statistical approaches. We conclude by reviewing the best practices for non-persistent EDC research with regards to pregnancy and women’s health. Though limited, we found some evidence indicating that exposure to non-persistent EDCs is associated with pregnancy health. However, findings from these studies have been inconsistent and require corroboration. Recent studies have also proposed that non-persistent EDC exposures in pregnancy may adversely affect postnatal maternal health. To date, only a few studies have been conducted and have only focused on postpartum weight. More research is needed in this area to inform efforts to promote optimal health across the lifespan of women.