Effects of microwaves on fetus and female genital organs remain to be elucidated. To demonstrate the placental circulatory disturbances induced by microwaves and to clarify the endocrine pathogenesis, placental blood flow and five endocrine indicators, i.e., corticosterone (CS), estradiol (E2), progesterone (P), prostaglandin E2 (PGE2) and prostaglandin F2 alpha (PGF2 alpha) were measured in rats exposed to whole-body microwaves with an intensity of 10 mW/cm2 at a frequency of 2,450 MHz. The placental blood flow at 45-90 min after exposure was significantly decreased in the rats exposed to the microwaves. Placental blood flow at 15 and 30 min was increased by pretreatment with intraperitoneal administration of angiotensin II (AII). In contrast, no significant change in placental blood flow was recognized in the AII pretreated rats exposed to the microwaves. An increase in CS and a decrease in E2 were induced by the microwave exposure independent of pretreatment with AII. P was increased by microwave exposure in the rats without pretreatment with AII. PGE2 was not changed by the microwave exposure in the case of either nonpretreatment or pretreatment with AII. PGF2 alpha was increased by the microwave exposure in the rats without pretreatment with AII. The present results indicate that excessive exposure to whole-body microwave disorders pregnancy in terms of placental circulatory dysfunction. The data suggest the involvement of endocrine mechanisms in the decrease in placental blood flow which is induced via a detrimental effect of microwaves on PGF2 alpha and on pituitary functions such as general emotional stress.