The body’s developmental period begins at pregnancy when a sperm fertilizes an egg. The developmental period continues through birth and ends at the time of sexual maturity. This maturity involves the formation and change of the body’s organs and tissues. These changes involve size, biochemistry, form, and function. How fast changes occur depends on the organ and its phases of development. Exposure to some hazardous substances can adversely affect various stages of an organ’s development.
Click on a substance to go to the health effects chapter in the toxicological profile. Then, search on any target organ system to find the health effects information on that system.