Workers in petrol stations in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) are worried that continued exposure to petroleum-based chemicals and aerosol gasoline is causing impotence.
A report by Emirates 247 highlights the worries of men working in fuel stations that exposure to the petrol based chemicals can result in impotence, a low sperm count and hormone imbalances. Unmarried men have heard that most of their married colleagues have encountered difficulties in fathering children.
As it is illegal for unmarried men to conduct sexual relationships in the UAE they are burdened by the possible future consequences of their current exposure to fuel, and are taking steps to self medicate to avoid any potential problems regarding impotency and low fertility.
Workers told Emirates 237 they are consuming Ayurvedic medicines, dates and cashew nuts to ensure they will be able to have a healthy sex life. One man who is due to marry soon said his doctor "advised me to eat a lot of fruits and dates and drink date syrup. Some of my colleagues have bought Ayurvedic products to increase their libido."
The report goes on to say that "Fuel marketing companies will not, however, discuss the matter and said they are taking several measures to ensure health and safety of their employees. A few other international research groups have also found impotency common among those exposed to petroleum vapours."
Emirates 247 cites a report by the Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety that says“Gasoline vapours can cause central nervous system (CNS) depression." However, the full report concludes there is "No information suitable for evaluation" regarding the question if gasoline can cause problems with the reproductive system.
A report by INCHEM does state in point 188.8.131.52 that exposure to benzene, one of the components found in petrol, "reportedly led to impotence in some patients."