Inorganic substances - 5,778 entries found
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The silent killer
Nitrogen is an invisible, tasteless and odorless gas that comprises about 78 percent of the air we breathe, but its potential to kill workers in or near confined spaces should never be underestimated. This article describes a fatal nitrogen asphyxiation accident having occurred in an oil refinery, the common causes of accidents involving 80 fatalities and 50 injuries having occurred in the United Stated between 1992 and 2002 and the good practices to adopt for preventing these accidents (alarm systems, continuous atmosphere monitoring, ventilation with fresh air, rescue organization, training).
Occupational Hazards, Sep. 2006, p.40-43. Illus.
Manzanaro Arana R., Apellániz González A.
Toxicology of cadmium - Literature survey
Toxicología del cadmio: revisión bibiográfica [in Spanish]
Contents of this literature survey on the toxicology of cadmium: physical and chemical properties of cadmium; utilization; contamination sources; physiopathology; clinical effects of acute poisoning by ingestion (gastrointestinal effects, migraine, muscular pain) and by inhalation (bronchopulmonary changes, dyspnoea, cyanosis, migraine, vertigo and pulmonary oedema), as well as of chronic poisoning (yellow colouring of the teeth, respiratory disorders, renal disorders); medical treatment; prevention and limitation of exposure.
Prevención, Oct.-Dec. 2006, No.178, p.38-47. Illus. 48 ref.
Saito H., Mori I., Ogawa Y., Hirata M.
Relationship between blood lead level and work related factors using the NIIH questionnaire system
A study on the management and improvement of the work environment was conducted from 1990 to 2000 at 259 lead-handling factories in Japan. Data were obtained by means of questionnaires addressed to employers. Various factors affecting blood lead levels (PbBs), including gender, age, employment duration, factory size, work environment control and job categories were analyzed. The PbB of men was found to be higher than that of women, and may be due to the differences in job distribution. PbB increased along with increasing age and employment duration. PbB declined as the factory size increased. The odds ratio (OR) of PbB higher than 20µg/dL according to factory size was significantly high even after adjusting for work environment control class. This demonstrates that not only the working environment but also safety management was poorer among small-scale factories than among large-scale factories. Smelting or refining lead had the highest risk for lead exposure while painting had the lowest risk. Other findings are discussed.
Industrial Health, Oct. 2006, Vol.44, No.4, p.619-628. 30 ref.
http://www.jniosh.go.jp/old/niih/en/indu_hel/2006/pdf/indhealth_44_4_619.pdf [in English]
Apostoli P., Cornelis R., Duffus J., Hoet P., Lison D., Templeton D.
Inter-Organization Programme for the Sound Management of Chemicals (IOMC)
Elemental speciation in human health risk assessment
The purpose of this publication is to evaluate the importance of the speciation of metals in human health hazards and to provide guidance on carrying out risk assessment taking speciation into account. Aimed at risk assessors and regulators, it seeks to raise their awareness of the importance of speciation. Contents: scope and definitions; structural aspects of speciation; analytical techniques and methodology; bioaccessibility and bioavailability; toxicokinetics and biological monitoring; molecular and cellular mechanisms of metal toxicity; health effects. Detailed summaries in French and Spanish are included.
World Health Organization, Distribution and Sales Service, 1211 Genčve 27, Switzerland, 2006. xviii, 238p. Illus. Approx. 700 ref. Index. Price: CHF 30.00; USD 27.00 (CHF 21.00 in developing countries). Downloadable version free of charge.
http://www.who.int/ipcs/publications/ehc/ehc234.pdf [in English]
Sińczuk-Walczak H., Szymczak M., Aniołczyk H., Brzeźnicki S., Raźniewska G., Trzcinka-Ochocka M., Matczak W.
The effect of combined exposure to chemical and physical factors on the nervous system during aluminium production: A preliminary finding
Skutki zdrowotne w układzie nerwowym łącznego narażenia na czynniki chemiczne i fizyczne podczas produkcji aluminium: Doniesienie wstępne [in Polish]
Medical examinations were carried out on 39 male workers exposed to aluminium dust, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, and magnetic fields during aluminium production. Clinical symptoms, such as headache (46.2%), increased emotional irritability (66.7%), concentration difficulty (25.6%), insomnia (30.8%), hypersomnia (15.4%), and mood lability (10.3%) predominated among functional disorders of the nervous system in workers chronically exposed to chemical and physical factors. Objective neurological examinations did not reveal organic lesions in the central or peripheral nervous system. In EEG recordings classified as abnormal, paroxysmal changes were most common (20.5%).
Medycyna pracy, 2006, Vol.57, No.1, p.7-13. 28 ref.
Liao Y.H., Hwang L.C., Kao J.S., Yiin S.J., Lin S.F., Lin C.H., Lin Y.C., Aw T.C.
Lipid peroxidation in workers exposed to aluminium, gallium, indium, arsenic, and antimony in the optoelectronic industry
The objective of this study was to investigate whether exposure to aluminium, gallium, indium, arsenic, and antimony induces lipid peroxidation in humans. Blood and urine levels of 103 exposed electronic industry workers and 67 referents were analyzed using inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry. Malondialdehyde (MDA), the product of lipid peroxidation, was determined by high-performance liquid chromatography. The mean plasma MDA level of the exposed workers was significantly higher than that of the referents. The levels of MDA in the exposed workers were correlated significantly with the levels of urinary gallium and arsenic.
Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine, Aug. 2006, Vol.48, No.8, p.789-793. 35 ref.
Advisory Committee on Existing Chemicals (BUA)
Conclusions of this criteria document which reflects the state of knowledge of July 2005: triethoxy-2,4,4-trimethylpentylsilane is a clear liquid used in the construction industry for the impregnation of concrete. It reacts with water and alcohols. Modes of entry include ingestion and skin absorption. Animal studies show very low toxicity (LD50 at over 2000mg/kg). In rats, target organs of chronic exposure are the forestomach, liver, bladder and kidney. No studies are available on toxic effects to reproduction. In vitro and in vivo studies show the product to be non-mutagenic. Although no experimental data are available, carcinogenicity is considered unlikely. .
S. Hirzel Verlag, Birkenwaldstrasse 44, 70191 Stuttgart, Germany, 2006. xiii, 46p. 81 ref.
Di Lorenzo L., Silvestroni A., Martino M.G., Gagliardi T., Corfiati M., Soleo L.
Evaluation of peripheral blood neutrophil leucocytes in lead-exposed workers
The objective of this study was to verify whether occupational lead exposure induces changes in the number of blood neutrophil leucocytes, and to assess a possible dose-response relationship between blood lead (Pb-B) and the circulating neutrophil count in exposed workers. It involved 68 lead-exposed male workers and 59 unexposed male controls. A standardized questionnaire on occupational and non-occupational factors was administered to all the subjects. Blood and urine samples were collected and analysed. Compared to controls, exposed workers had significantly higher Pb-B and mean absolute neutrophil count (ANC). ANC correlated significantly with the biological lead dose and effect indices. Moreover, there was a dose-dependent increase of ANC with increasing Pb-B levels. There was also an interaction between Pb-B level and smoking habit in increasing the number of blood neutrophils among lead-exposed workers.
International Archives of Occupational and Environmental Health, June 2006, Vol.79, No.6, p.491-498. 44 ref.
Fernández-Nieto M., Quirce S., Carnés J., Sastre J.
Occupational asthma due to chromium and nickel salts
Exposure to chromium and nickel salts is a poorly characterized cause of occupational asthma. This article describes four patients with work-related asthma due to metallic salts. Skin tests to potassium dichromate and nickel sulfate were performed. The patients also underwent methacholine inhalation tests and specific inhalation challenges (SIC) with chromium and nickel salts. Two patients showed positive skin tests to potassium dichromate and nickel sulfate. All patients had bronchial hyperresponsiveness to methacholine, which increased 24h after SIC with metallic salts. SIC with potassium dichromate elicited late asthmatic reactions in two workers, one subject had an early asthmatic reaction, and another subject showed a dual asthmatic reaction. SIC with nickel sulfate induced a dual asthmatic reaction in one subject and a late asthmatic reaction in another. Chromium and nickel salts can give rise to occupational asthma in exposed workers. The underlying mechanism may be IgE-mediated.
International Archives of Occupational and Environmental Health, June 2006, Vol.79, No.6, p.483-486. 16 ref.
Aluminio en polvo [in Spanish]
Chemical safety data sheet for powdered aluminium. Contents: potentially harmful health effects; first aid; measures in the event of fires or accidental release; handling and storage; control of exposures and personal protection; physical and chemical properties; stability and reactivity; toxicological information; environmental protection information; waste disposal; information concerning transport; regulations. The substance is inflammable and the dust may form inflammable or explosive mixtures with air. Inhalation or contact with the skin or eyes causes irritation; pulmonary fibrosis has been reported following long-term exposure.
Consejo Colombiano de Seguridad, Cra. 20 No. 39 - 62, Bogotá D.C, Colombia, 2006. 4p. Illus.
Unusual fire in a sulfur tank
Incendie atypique sur un bac de soufre [in French]
This article describes a fire that occurred in a sulfur tank located in a sulfuric acid plant in the industrial area of a French port. Topics addressed: causal factors (heat wave, lightning); propagation; intervention of firefighting services; organization of the plant's safety services; lessons learned.
Face au risque, Dec. 2006, No.428, p.28-32. Illus.
Cyanide: Understanding the risk, enhancing preparedness
This research project was conducted to provide an overview of cyanide risk as a toxicant and cyanide incident preparedness in the USA. The research was conducted in two phases. The first phase was a geographical information system (GIS) analysis of pre-existing data to determine the spatial distribution of risk. This analysis resulted in maps that portray the known locations of cyanide facilities, the relative magnitude of cyanide use and the distribution of fire- and burn-related deaths. The second phase was a survey of the knowledge, attitudes and practices of advanced life support (ALS) providers throughout the USA. A representative sample of 507 ALS providers was surveyed during the summer of 2005. The main findings of this survey are summarized.
Clinical Toxicology, 2006, Vol.44, Suppl.1, p.47-63. Illus. 13 ref.
Filon F.L., Boeniger M., Maina G., Adami G., Spinelli P., Damian A.
Skin absorption of inorganic lead (PbO) and the effect of skin cleansers
The aim of this study was to investigate the percutaneous penetration of lead oxide (PbO) powder and the effect of two different detergents on the speed of skin decontamination. Franz cells were used to study in vitro PbO skin penetration during a 24h period. The tests were performed without or with decontamination using either a common brand of liquid soap or a new experimental cleanser 30 minutes after the start of exposure. It was confirmed that PbO can pass through the skin with a median penetration of 2.9ng/cm2. The cleaning procedure using the liquid soap significantly increased skin penetration with a median value of 23.6ng/cm2, whereas the new experimental cleanser only marginally increased penetration (7.1ng/cm2). The results indicate that it is necessary to prevent skin contamination from occurring in the first place because a short contact can increase skin penetration even if quickly followed by washing.
Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine, July 2006, Vol.48, No.7, p.692-699. Illus. 40 ref.
Potula V., Kleinbaum D., Kaye W.
Lead exposure and spine bone mineral density
The purpose of this study was to assess changes in spine bone mineral density (BMD) over time in relation to changes in bone and blood lead levels and other risk factors among female former smelter workers. Spine BMD was measured using an X-ray bone densitometer and tibia bone lead content was estimated using an X-ray fluorescence system. Blood lead levels were analyzed using graphite furnace atomic absorption with Zeeman effect background correction. Information about risk factors was obtained through a questionnaire. After controlling for baseline BMD, baseline blood lead measured in 1994 and time since menopause, spine bone density in 2000 decreased with increasing blood lead levels in 2000 in all women, especially if they worked in technical jobs most of the time at the plant.
Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine, June 2006, Vol.48, No.6, p.556-564. 58 ref.
Lichtenstein N., Jaschke M., Nies E., Möller A.
Basic principles for testing for the presence of harmful substances in hearing protectors
Grundlagen für die Prüfung von Gehörschützern auf ihren Gehalt an Gefahrstoffen [in German]
Hearing protectors marketed in Germany may be awarded a certificate by the statutory accident insurance carrier (Berufsgenossenschaft) to indicate that they contain low concentrations of harmful substances such as arsenic, antimony, lead, tin, tin-organic compounds and phthalates. Suitable analytical procedures for the identification of these substances were selected and standardized by round-robin tests. Concentration limits were derived from current knowledge of the availability of the substances and their dermal absorption. For example the concentrations of arsenic, antimony and lead in hearing protectors may not exceed 25 mg/kg. The certificate was introduced in response to a report on the harmful substances contained in hearing protectors that caused many noise-exposed workers not to use them.
Gefahrstoffe Reinhaltung der Luft, Apr. 2006, Vol.66, No.4, p.135-141. Illus. 25 ref.
Jorg E., Pahlmann W., Klein G.
Dioxins and heavy metals - Potential hazards in collected dusts
Dioxine und Schwermetalle - Gefahrenpotenzial in Filterstäuben [in German]
This study was carried out in ten metal-producing and metalworking plants in North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany, where collected dusts are recycled. The classification and labelling of the dusts with regard to their composition and the data sheets supplied with the dusts destined for recycling were examined. In 28 dusts collected in steel and zinc producing plants and in foundries, the concentrations of polychlorinated dioxins, polychlorinated furans and heavy metals such as cadmium, lead, nickel and zinc were determined. Almost all analysed dusts were found to pose a hazard to the environment but were not labelled as such. Little was known about the composition of dusts collected in zinc smelters and heavy metal foundries so that no adequate protective measures were taken during handling and recycling.
Technische Überwachung, Apr. 2006, Vol.47, No.4, p.47-52. Illus. 15 ref.
Böcher A., Müller M., Buchter A.
Arsenic diseases of wine-growers and medical importance of environmental arsenic exposure
Die Arsenerkrankungen der Winzer und umweltmedizinische Bedeutung der Arsenbelastung [in German]
Five cases of arsenic diseases have recently been identified among elderly wine growers who had been occupationally exposed in the 1930s and 1940s to arsenic-containing pesticides and who had consumed arsenic-containing home made wine. The exposure circumstances in these cases and the diagnosed arsenic-related diseases are described. In all cases the latency period between termination of exposure and first diagnosis of an arsenic-related disease was extremely long, ranging from 40 to 60 years. In two cases a urinary transitional cell carcinoma was diagnosed in addition to typical skin diseases caused by arsenic. Based on epidemiologic data from Asian and South American countries that provided evidence of a significantly increased risk of urinary transitional cell carcinoma following long-term arsenic exposure, it is recommended that this cancer should be recognized as an occupational disease in patients with skin diseases caused by occupational arsenic exposure.
Zentralblatt für Arbeitsmedizin, Arbeitsschutz und Ergonomie, 2006, Vol.56, No.3, p.58-67. Illus. Bibl.ref.
World Health Organization (WHO)
IARC monographs on the evaluation of carcinogenic risks to humans - Inorganic and organic lead compounds
This volume of the IARC Monographs contains evaluations of inorganic and organic lead compounds. Contents: exposure data (production processes for lead and lead products, uses, environmental occurrence, exposure of the general population and of workers in specific occupations, methods of sampling and analysis in biological matter, exposure limits); studies of cancer in humans and experimental animals; studies of other toxic effects (effects on haeme-containing systems, nephrotoxicity, neurological and neurotoxic effects, cardiovascular toxicity, immunological, reproductive and genetic effects). Overall evaluation: inorganic lead compounds are probably carcinogenic to humans (Group 2A), organic lead compounds are not classifiable as to their carcinogenicity to humans (Group 3).
WHO Press, World Health Organization, 20 Avenue Appia, 1211 Genčve 27, Switzerland; International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC), 150 cours Albert Thomas, 69372 Lyon Cedex 08, France, 2006. xiii, 506p. Approx. 1600 ref.
Kim K.R., Lee S.W., Paik N.W.
Cross-sectional analysis of blood lead level of entire Korean lead workers
This study analysed blood lead (PbB) levels from the 2003 health surveillance results of 13,043 lead workers from 1217 lead industries to evaluate the importance of low level lead intoxication in Korea. The geometric mean PbB was 6.08µg/dl. 56.6% and 7.9% of total lead workers had PbB level over than 5µg/dl and 25µg/dl, respectively. Male workers showed relatively higher PbB levels compared to women, but in the electronics industries, more women than men were at risk of low level lead exposure. While conventional industries such as battery manufacturing and metallurgy remained in the high-risk group for lead exposure, there were high risks in other industries such as plastics, chemicals and parts manufacturing. Non-production tasks such as fork-lift truck driving, maintenance, laboratory testing and various supporting functions also showed risks of high blood lead levels.
Industrial Health, Apr. 2006, Vol.44, No.2, p.318-327. Illus. 24 ref.
http://www.jniosh.go.jp/old/niih/en/indu_hel/2006/pdf/indhealth_44_2_318.pdf [in English]
Fenga C., Cacciola A., Martino L.B., Calderaro S.R., Di Nola C., Verzera A., Trimarchi G., Germanň D.
Relationship of blood lead levels to blood pressure in exhaust battery storage workers
This study examined the relationship between occupational lead exposure and elevated blood pressure among a group of 27 workers of a lead battery plant in Italy aged between 27 to 62 years. Measurements were taken of blood lead concentration, blood biomarkers of lead exposure, body mass index and systolic and diastolic blood pressure. The results showed that long-term occupational exposure was related to a slight increase of systolic and diastolic blood pressure among workers who had been exposed to higher levels of lead compared to those exposed to lower levels. Furthermore, blood lead concentration was higher among workers exposed to higher levels of ambient lead, while in the same group of workers ALAD (aminolevulinic acid dehydratase) activity was reduced. It is concluded that long term cumulative lead exposure can significantly increase blood pressure in workers exposed to low levels of lead.
Industrial Health, Apr. 2006, Vol.44, No.2, p.304-309. 18 ref.
http://www.jniosh.go.jp/old/niih/en/indu_hel/2006/pdf/indhealth_44_2_304.pdf [in English]
Varona M., Díaz S., Toro G.
Effects of mercury poisoning
Efectos de la intoxicación por mercurio [in Spanish]
This article presents the findings of a study on health impairment caused by exposure to mercury. Main topics addressed: classification of mercury compounds; physical and chemical properties; modes of entry; clinical symptoms at low concentrations; acute poisoning; diagnosis.
Salud, Trabajo y Ambiente, 3rd Quarter 2006, Vol.13, No.49, p.8-12. Illus. 18 ref.
Kim J.H., Gibb H.J., Howe P.D.
Inter-Organization Programme for the Sound Management of Chemicals (IOMC)
Cobalt and inorganic cobalt compounds
Conclusions of this criteria document on cobalt and inorganic cobalt compounds: rats and mice exposed to cobalt salts by ingestion exhibited a number of effects including necrosis and inflammation of the respiratory tract epithelium, cardiac damage, testicular atrophy and kidney damage. Lung tumours were found in rats and mice exposed to cobalt oxide fumes. Many cobalt salts are genotoxic to mammals. Cobalt has been found to have reproductive and developmental effects in animals. There are reports of skin sensitization in humans following dermal exposure. There is an excess of cancer deaths among workers in the hard metal industry, but the role of cobalt as opposed to other substances has not been proven. An inhalation tolerable concentration of 0.1µg/m3 has been derived based on a cross-sectional study of lung function decrement among diamond polishers. Detailed summaries in French and Spanish are included.
World Health Organization, Distribution and Sales Service, 1211 Genčve 27, Switzerland, 2006. iv, 88p. Illus. Approx. 450 ref.
http://www.who.int/ipcs/publications/cicad/cicad69%20.pdf [in English]
International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC)
IARC monographs on the evaluation of carcinogenic risks to humans - Cobalt in hard metals and cobalt sulfate, gallium arsenide, indium phosphide and vanadium pentoxide
Most of the compounds whose carcinogenicity is evaluated in this volume are poorly soluble solid materials. They are deposited in particulate form in the lung where they may be retained for a long period of time while exerting their toxic properties. Workers in the hard-metal industry may be exposed to cobalt in hard metals (with or without tungsten carbide); gallium arsenide and indium phosphide are used in the semi-conductor industry and vanadium pentoxide is mainly used in the production of metal alloys. Conclusions of this monograph: cobalt metal without tungsten carbide, cobalt sulfate and other soluble cobalt(II) salts are possibly carcinogenic to humans (Group 2B); gallium arsenide is carcinogenic to humans (Group 1); indium phosphide is probably carcinogenic to humans (Group 2A); vanadium pentoxide is possibly carcinogenic to humans (Group 2B).
World Health Organization, Distribution and Sales Service, 1211 Genčve 27, Switzerland, International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC), 150 cours Albert Thomas, 69372 Lyon Cedex 08, France 2006. xiv, 330p. Illus. Bibl.ref. Index. Price: USD 40.00.
Chen P.C., Pan I.J., Wang J.D.
Parental exposure to lead and small for gestational age births
This study was conducted to assess whether parental lead exposure was related to risks of low birth weight, preterm delivery and small for gestational age births. The cohort comprised lead-exposed workers listed in an occupational blood-lead notification database in Taiwan. Data on the birth outcomes of their offspring were obtained from the Taiwan birth registration database between 1993 and 1997. Only singleton births whose parental blood-lead concentrations were tested during pregnancy or within a one-year span before conception were included. Findings provide additional evidence of the effects of lead on adverse birth outcomes, especially for small for gestational age births. Maternal exposure to lead plays a more important role in the adverse effect on birth outcome than paternal exposure.
American Journal of Industrial Medicine, 2006, Vol.49, p.417-422. 38 ref.
Lidén C., Skare L., Lind B., Nise G., Vahter M.
Assessment of skin exposure to nickel, chromium and cobalt by acid wipe sampling and ICP-MS
This article describes a technique developed for the assessment of skin exposure to nickel, chromium and cobalt based on sampling with cellulose wipes impregnated with 1% nitric acid. Chemical analysis was performed by inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (ICP-MS). The recovery of nickel, chromium and cobalt from arms and palms was 93%. The analytical result is expressed in terms of mass per unit area (µg/cm2). The developed acid wipe sampling technique was found to be suitable for determination of nickel, chromium and cobalt deposited on the skin. The technique may be used in workplace studies, in studies of individuals in the general population, in dermatitis patients, in identification of risk groups, as well as in developing preventive strategies and in follow-up after intervention.
Contact Dermatitis, May 2006, Vol.54, No.5, p.233-238. Illus. 17 ref.
Nieboer E., Thomassen Y., Chashchin V., Odland J.Ř.
Occupational exposure assessment of metals
Ocenka professional'noj vrednosti metallov [in Russian]
The main hazards resulting from occupational exposure to inorganic nickel compounds are respiratory cancers (nasal and lung) and hypersensitivity (contact dermatitis). Following a literature review of toxicological and epidemiologic studies relating to nickel and its compounds, this article describes ongoing work on the monitoring of workers' exposure to nickel in a nickel refinery in the Kola peninsula in the Murmansk region of Russia.
Barents - Newsletter on Occupational Health and Safety, 2006, Vol.9, No.1, p.6-10 (English); p.12-16 (Russian). Illus. 40 ref.
http://www.ttl.fi/NR/rdonlyres/BB087B74-8652-4EA5-997B-E07945303B47/0/Barents1_06.pdf [in English]
Hidrosulfito de sodio [in Spanish]
Chemical safety data sheet for sodium hydrosulfite. The substance is a flammable solid which may ignite in the presence of humidity or air; there is a violent reaction in contact with water. Inhalation may cause severe irritation of the mucosa and upper respiratory tract; very high concentration may cause pulmonary oedema. Ingestion may cause abdominal pain, depression of the central nervous system and death. Contact with the skin causes irritation and skin burns at high concentrations. The substance causes eye irritation and may cause burns and possible eye damage. Prolonged exposure may result in allergic reactions.
Consejo Colombiano de Seguridad, Cra. 20 No. 39 - 62, Bogotá D.C., Colombia, [ca 2006]. 4p. Illus.
Health impairment caused by silver and its compounds in occupational settings
Berufliche Gefährdungen durch Silber und Silberverbindungen [in German]
Atteintes ŕ la santé causées par l'argent et ses composés dans le cadre professionnel [in French]
Silver and its compounds are used in prostheses, fungicides, antibacterial topical agents, the minting of coins, the electronics industry and photography. This article discusses the health hazards due to occupational exposure to silver and its compounds. Contents: industrial uses of silver and its compounds; health impairment (pigmentation disorders, diseases of the respiratory system and of internal organs); protective measures and threshold limit values at the place of work.
Informations médicales - Medizinische Mitteilungen, 2006, No.77, p.85-89. Illus. 5 ref.
http://wwwitsp1.suva.ch/sap/its/mimes/waswo/99/pdf/02869-77-d.pdf [in German]
http://wwwitsp1.suva.ch/sap/its/mimes/waswo/99/pdf/02869-77-f.pdf [in French]
Day G.A., Stefaniak A.B., Weston A., Tinkle S.S.
Beryllium exposure: Dermal and immunological considerations
Persons exposed to beryllium are at increased risk of developing sensitization and chronic beryllium disease (CBD). This review presents current understanding regarding the potential importance of skin exposure to beryllium. It is based on a review of the published literature, including epidemiological, immunological, genetic, and laboratory-based studies of in vivo and in vitro models. It was found that a reduction in inhalation exposure to beryllium has not resulted in a concomitant reduction in the occurrence of beryllium sensitization or CBD, suggesting that continued prevalence may be due in part to skin exposure to beryllium-containing particles. A prudent approach to worker protection is therefore to assess and minimize both skin and inhalation exposures to beryllium.
International Archives of Occupational and Environmental Health, Feb. 2006, Vol.79, No.2, p.161-164. 37 ref.
Pakulska D., Czerczak S.
Hazardous effects of arsine: A short review
This article reviews the mechanisms by which arsine exerts its toxic effects and examines conditions of occupational exposure to this gas. Occupational exposure to arsine occurs mostly in the chemical and metallurgical industries. In these industries, arsine is often a cause of unexpected serious poisoning, affecting primarily the blood and kidneys. Acute arsine poisoning results in massive damage to red blood cells through an oxidative mechanism, probably by formation of hydrogen peroxide and adducts with oxyhaemoglobin. According to another hypothesis, arsine acts on the sodium-potassium pump mechanism, producing subsequent red blood cell swelling and haemolysis. Rapid haemolysis may lead to oliguric renal failure and death. Symptoms of chronic poisoning are similar to those observed in acute poisoning. The main difference is a longer latency period. Delayed effects of chronic exposure to low levels of arsine have not been precisely identified.
International Journal of Occupational Medicine and Environmental Health, 1st quarter 2006, Vol.19, No.1, p.36-44. 51 ref.
Hurtado J., Gonzales G.F., Steenland K.
Mercury exposures in informal gold miners and relatives in southern Peru
Subjects working in or living near informal gold mining and processing in southern Peru were studied to determine mercury exposures from two tasks: amalgamation and amalgam smelting. The authors collected 17 airborne and 41 urinary mercury levels. The mean urinary levels were 728 (range: 321-1,662) and 113 (45-197)µg/L for working in smelters and living near smelters, respectively. A third group working in amalgamation had a mean 18µg/L (range 8-37). People living in the mining town but with no mining activities had 8µg/L (5-10), while a control group outside the town had 4µg/L (2-6). Mean airborne mercury exposure was 2,423µg/m3 (range 530-4,430) during smelting, 30.5µg/m3 (12-55) during amalgamation, and 12µg/m3 (3-23) in the mining town. Smelters are highly contaminated with mercury, as are the people living around smelters.
International Journal of Occupational and Environmental Health, Oct.-Dec. 2006, Vol.12, No.4, p.340-345. Illus. 25 ref.
http://www.ijoeh.com/pfds/IJOEH_1204_Hurtado.pdf [in English]
Stanton M.L., Henneberger P.K., Kent M.S., Deubner D.C., Kreiss K., Schuler C.R.
Sensitization and chronic beryllium disease among workers in copper-beryllium distribution centers
Little is known about the risk of sensitization and chronic beryllium disease among workers performing limited processing of copper-beryllium alloys downstream of the primary beryllium industry. In this study, a cross-sectional survey of employees was performed at three copper-beryllium alloy distribution centres. A total of 100 workers were tested for beryllium sensitization using the beryllium blood lymphocyte proliferation test. Available data on beryllium concentrations in air were used to characterize airborne exposure. One participant, who also had exposure to other forms of beryllium, was found to be sensitized and to have chronic beryllium disease, resulting in a prevalence of sensitization of 1% for all tested. This prevalence is lower than for workers in primary beryllium production facilities.
Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine, Feb. 2006, Vol.48, No.2, p.204-211. Illus. 26 ref.
The beryllium occupational exposure limit: Historical origin and current inadequacy
This review article discusses the historical development of the occupational exposure limit for beryllium and argues in favour of its lowering from the current level of 2µg/m3 at which instances of chronic beryllium disease continue to be reported.
Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine, Feb. 2006, Vol.48, No.2, p.109-116. Illus. 70 ref.
Birk T., Mundt K.A., Dell L.D., Luippold R.S., Miksche L., Steinmann-Steiner-Haldenstaett W., Mundt D.J.
Lung cancer mortality in the German chromate industry, 1958 to 1998
This mortality study of workers at two German chromate production facilities evaluated possible dose-response relationships between hexavalent chromium exposure and lung cancer. Mortality was followed-up through 1998 and limited to those employed since each plant converted to a production process involving less chromate dust production. More than 12,000 results of urinary chromium analyses were available, as was smoking information. All-cause mortality indicated a healthy worker effect (standardized mortality ratio (SMR)=0.80); however, lung cancers appeared to be increased (SMR=1.48). No clear dose-response was found in stratified analyses by duration of employment and time since hire. On the basis of urinary chromium data, lung cancer risk was elevated only in the highest exposure group (SMR=2.09). These data suggest a possible threshold effect of occupational hexavalent chromium exposure on lung cancer.
Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine, Apr. 2006, Vol.48, No.4, p.426-433. Illus. 35 ref.
Chang S.J., Chang H.Y., Shih T.S., Chou T.C., Chen C.J., Chen P.C., Sung F.C.
Electrocardiographic abnormality for workers exposed to carbon disulfide at a viscose rayon plant
This study investigated electrocardiography (ECG) manifestations for male workers with carbon disulfide exposure at a Taiwanese rayon manufacturing plant. A total of 251 men in the exposed group and 226 controls underwent physical examinations and completed questionnaires. The prevalence of ECG abnormalities was much higher in the exposed group (25.9%) than in the reference group (2.7%), with an odds ratio (OR) of 12.8. Foremen were at the highest risk of abnormal ECG (OR=20.6), followed by filament-spinning workers (OR=14.2), viscose manufacturing workers (OR=11.3), and carbon disulfide-manufacturing workers (OR=8.1). Multivariate logistic regression analysis based on cumulative exposure index also showed a dose-response relationship, and the risk of ECG abnormality could be initiated at an exposure history of 31 to 57ppm-years, with an OR of 7.2. The ECG abnormalities observed among workers exposed to permissible levels of carbon disulfide highlight the importance of environmental control of the chemical and of workers' education in exposure prevention at work.
Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine, Apr. 2006, Vol.48, No.4, p.394-399. 22 ref.
Lundström N.G., Englyst V., Gerhardsson L., Jin T., Nordberg G.
Lung cancer development in primary smelter workers: A nested case-referent study
The objective of this study was to evaluate the impact of work-related exposure to arsenic and lead versus smoking among lead smelter workers who had developed lung cancer. In a cohort of 3979 lead smelter workers, 46 male subjects had contracted respiratory malignancies. They were compared with 141 age-matched male referents by conditional logistic regression analysis. Cases showed a fourfold higher smoking rate compared with referents. When restricted to smokers, the cumulative air arsenic exposure index, but not the lead exposure indices, was also significantly higher among the cases. It is concluded that cumulative arsenic exposure and smoking were the main risk factors for the development of lung cancer, but not lead exposure.
Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine, Apr. 2006, Vol.48, No.4, p.376-380. 30 ref.
Möhner M., Lindtner M., Otten H., Gille H.G.
Leukemia and exposure to ionizing radiation among German uranium miners
It is well known that uranium miners are at an increased risk of lung cancer. Whether they also have an increased risk for other cancer sites remains under discussion. The aim of this study was to examine the leukaemia risk among uranium miners. It involved 377 former uranium miners in East Germany and 980 matched controls. Using conditional logistic regression models, a dose-response relationship between leukaemia risk and exposure to radon progeny could not be confirmed. Yet, a significantly elevated risk is seen in workers with the highest exposure to the combined effect of γ-radiation and long-lived radionuclides. The results suggest that an elevated risk for leukaemia is restricted to employees with a very long occupational career in underground uranium mining or uranium processing. Moreover, the study does not support the hypothesis of an association between exposure to short-lived radon progeny and leukaemia risk.
American Journal of Industrial Medicine, Apr. 2006, Vol.49, No.4, p.238-248. Illus. 23 ref.
Guthrie G., Dilworth M., Sen D.
Reducing mercury exposure in fluorescent lamp manufacture - A workplace case study
Based on job observations and exposure evaluations in a fluorescent lamp manufacturing plant, this study concludes that there is considerable risk of mercury exposure of workers. By virtue of its volatility and a tendency for spilled metallic mercury to break up into small globules, thereby increasing the surface area available for vaporization, controlling exposure at the workplace can be difficult. Although the study focused on a single workplace, the findings and recommendations apply equally well to other workplace settings where mercury is used and handled in its metallic form, for example, the repair and manufacture of thermometers and gauges.
Journal of Occupational and Environmental Hygiene, Feb. 2006, Vol.3, No.2, p.D15-D18. Illus. 16 ref.
Kuo H.W., Lai L.H., Chou S.Y., Wu F.Y.
Association between blood lead level and blood pressure in aborigines and others in central Taiwan
To investigate the relationship between blood lead level (BLL) and blood pressure among aborigines and non-aborigines in central Taiwan, a community-based survey that included demographic data, medical history and blood chemistry analyses was conducted among 2,565 adults during an annual health examination. BLLs were analysed using a graphite furnace atomic absorption spectrometer (AAS). There was a dose response among the non-aborigines (high BLL odds ratio = 2.97, compared with low BLL) but not among aborigines. Based on multiple linear regression models, BLLs were positively correlated with both systolic (an increase of 0.85 mm Hg/µg/dL) and diastolic (an increase of 0.48 mm Hg/µg/dL) blood pressures after adjusting for age, gender, ethnic group, alcohol consumption, and body mass index. BLLs were higher among aborigines than non-aborigines and were significantly correlated with blood pressure, particularly systolic pressure. The association should be considered causal. [Abstract supplied by the journal]
International Journal of Occupational and Environmental Health, July-Sep. 2006, Vol.12, No.3, p.222-227. Illus. 23 ref.
http://www.ijoeh.com/pfds/IJOEH_1203_Kuo.pdf [in English]
Spiegel S.J., Savornin O., Shoko D., Veiga M.M.
Mercury reduction in Munhena, Mozambique: Homemade solutions and the social context for change
The health and environmental impacts of artisanal gold mining are of growing concern in Munhena, Mozambique, where more than 12,000 people are involved in such activities. Gold is extracted using mercury amalgamation, posing a considerable threat to human and environmental health. A pilot project ascertained the feasibility of reducing mercury use and emissions by promoting control measures utilizing local resources. Retorts were fabricated with local materials. Training workshops introduced the homemade retorts, and a portable mercury monitor revealed effective mercury reduction. Barriers to widespread technology adoption include poverty, lack of knowledge and trust, and the free supply of mercury from private gold buyers. Homemade retorts are inexpensive and effective, and miners could benefit by building community amalgamation centers. The government could play a greater role in gold purchasing to reduce mercury pollution. [Abstract supplied by the journal]
International Journal of Occupational and Environmental Health, July-Sep. 2006, Vol.12, No.3, p.215-221. Illus. 18 ref.
http://www.ijoeh.com/pfds/IJOEH_1203_Spiegel.pdf [in English]
Counter S.A., Buchanan L.H., Ortega F.
Neurocognitive screening of mercury-exposed children of Andean gold miners
Performance on Raven's Coloured Progressive Matrices (RCPM) test of visual-spatial reasoning was used to evaluate the effects of mercury (Hg) exposure on 73 Andean children aged 5 to 11 years (mean: 8.4) living in the Nambija and Portovelo gold mining areas of Ecuador, where Hg is widely used in amalgamation. Mean levels of Hg found in blood (HgB), urine (HgU), and hair (HgH) samples were 5.1 µg/L (SD: 2.4; range: 1-10 µg/L), 13.3 µg/L (SD: 25.9; range: 1-166 µg/L), and 8.5 µg/g (SD: 22.8; range: 1-135 µg/g), respectively. Of the children in the Nambija area 67-84.9% had abnormal RCPM standard scores (i.e.≤ 25%tile), depending on the test norm used in the data analysis. Higher standard scores for Peruvian (t=4.77; p=<0.0001) and Puerto Rican (t=4.51; p=<0.0001) norms than for U.S. norms suggested a linguistic influence. No difference was found between Peruvian and Puerto Rican norms (t=0.832; p=<0.408), which showed a significant positive correlation (r=0.915, p=<0.0001). Children with abnormal HgB and HgH levels had significantly lower scores on the RCPM subtest B than did children with nontoxic Hg levels (t=-2.16; p=<0.034). These results suggest that a substantial number of Hg-exposed children in the Nambija study area have neurocognitive deficits in visual-spatial reasoning. [Abstract supplied by the journal]
International Journal of Occupational and Environmental Health, July-Sep. 2006, Vol.12, No.3, p.209-214. Illus. 33 ref.
http://www.ijoeh.com/pfds/IJOEH_1203_Counter.pdf [in English]
Hałatek T., Sinczuk-Walczak H., Szymczak M., Rydzynski K.
Neurological and respiratory symptoms in shipyard welders exposed to manganese
This case-control study was performed to assess the use of neurophysiological tests for the detection of early effects of exposure to low manganese concentrations and to examine the use of Clara cell protein (CC16) as an early pulmonary biomarker of exposure to welding fumes. The study involved 59 shipyard welders and 23 controls, matched by age and smoking habits. Subjective neurological symptoms, visual evoked potentials and electroencephalography were examined. Relationships between manganese concentrations in the air, blood and urine as well as between cumulative exposure indices were investigated. CC16 as an early pulmonary biomarker in welding exposure was examined by immunoassay. Findings are discussed. It was confirmed that these sensitive tests could be used for the detection of early effect of exposure to low manganese concentrations.
International Journal of Occupational Medicine and Environmental Health, 3rd quarter 2005, Vol.18, No.3, p.265-274. Illus. 51 ref.
Goon A.T.J., Goh C.L.
Metal allergy in Singapore
This study examined the frequency of metal allergy among patients diagnosed with allergic contact dermatitis in the National Skin Centre of Singapore from 2001 to 2003. The frequency of positive patch tests to the following metals were: nickel 19.9%; chromates 5.6%; cobalt 8.2%; gold 8.3%. After declining from 1984 to 1990, chromate and cobalt allergies have since been steadily increasing. The most common sources of chromate allergy were cement, leather and metal objects. Most positive patch tests to cobalt are regarded as co-sensitization due to primary nickel or chromate allergies. There has also been a steep increase in positive patch tests to gold from 2001 to 2003.
Contact Dermatitis, 2005, Vol.52, p.130-132. 7 ref.
Dicromato de sodio [in Spanish]
Chemical safety data sheet for carbon dichromate. The substance is corrosive by all routes of exposure and causes severe burns on contact; inhalation may cause pulmonary sensitization or allergic asthma; high levels of exposure may cause pulmonary oedema; contact with the eyes may cause corneal lesions or blindness; skin contact may cause ulceration; skin absorption may result in systemic effects and may affect renal function; may be fatal if ingested; the substance is carcinogenic to humans.
Consejo Colombiano de Seguridad, Cra. 20 No. 39 - 62, Bogotá D.C., Colombia, [ca 2006]. 4p. Illus.
Mason H., Gallagher F., Sen D.
Window renovation and exposure to lead - An observational study
Renovation of windows in old houses can give rise to lead exposure. In this study, blood lead levels were compared among three cohorts: window renovation workers, all male workers monitored by the UK Health and Safety Laboratory during 1999-2001 and 63 male subjects involved in chemical paint stripping of wood. Both the window renovation and the wood stripping cohorts showed significantly higher blood lead than the "all workers" cohort. A similar pattern was also found for comparison of the prevalence of subjects above the UK suspension level of 60µg/dL under the Control of Lead at Work Regulations 2002.
Occupational Medicine, Dec. 2005, Vol.55, No.8, p.631-634. Illus. 14 ref.
Concerns for asthma at pre-placement assessment and health surveillance in platinum refining - A personal approach
The platinum refining process involves exposure to various irritants and allergens, which can induce asthma or aggravate pre-existing asthma. Prospective employees for platinum refining need to be assessed carefully to establish their respiratory health status. Routine medical surveillance has shown a reduction in the persistence of asthma among sensitized workers who cease exposure to platinum salts upon diagnosis. Skin prick tests using dilute platinum salt solutions can detect sensitization at an early stage and this has become the mainstay of all surveillance programmes, as it is objective, reproducible and predictive for the development of symptoms when exposure is allowed to continue. Smoking also constitutes a significant risk factor.
Occupational Medicine, Dec. 2005, Vol.55, No.8, p.595-599. 16 ref.
Guba C., Kuhlmann G.
Bundesanstalt für Arbeitsschutz und Arbeitsmedizin
Pollution by sulfuric acid in pickling workshops
Belastung durch Schwefelsäure in Beizereien [in German]
Sulfuric acid is widely used, in particular for treating metal surfaces. Workers in pickling workshops are exposed to sulfuric acid aerosols that have corrosive effects on the skin and the respiratory tract. In this study involving 156 pickling workshops, worker exposure was evaluated by means of ambient and breathing air sampling. Findings showed that most workshops were in compliance with threshold limit values. Measures aimed at limiting worker exposure to sulfuric acid (increase in ventilation flow, local exhaust) were proposed in several cases where MAK values were exceeded.
Wirtschaftsverlag NW, Postfach 10 11 10, 27511 Bremerhaven, Germany, 2005. 52p. Illus. 9 ref. Price: EUR 9.50.
http://www.baua.de/nn_28516/de/Publikationen/Forschungsberichte/2005/Fb1044,xv=vt.pdf [in German]
Chia S.E., Zhou H.J., Yap E., Tham M.T., Dong N.V., Hong Tu N.T., Chia K.S.
Association of renal function and δ-aminolevulinic acid dehydratase polymorphism among Vietnamese and Singapore workers exposed to inorganic lead
The effect of δ-aminolevulinic acid dehydratase (ALAD) polymorphisms on the association between blood lead and renal function was investigated among Vietnamese and Singaporean workers exposed to low to medium levels of inorganic lead. The distribution of ALAD polymorphism among Vietnamese, Chinese, Malays and Indians was also studied. Blood and urine samples were analysed for blood lead, ALAD genotype, urinary δ-aminolevulinic acid and renal function. ALAD1-1 was the predominant genotype for all ethnic groups while ALAD2-2 was the rarest. Results indicated that workers with the ALAD2 allele appeared to be more susceptible to the effects of lead (especially at higher levels) on renal function.
Occupational and Environmental Medicine, 2006, Vol. 63, p.180-186. Illus. 23 ref.
Chia S.E., Zhou H., Tham M.T., Yap E., Dong N.V., Hong Tu N.T., Chia K.S.
Possible influence of δ-aminolevulinic acid dehydratase polymorphism and susceptibility to renal toxicity of lead: A study of a Vietnamese population
In a cross-sectional study of 276 lead-exposed workers in Vietnam, all workers were measured for blood lead levels and for various urinary markers of renal toxicity. Six newly identified polymorphisms located on the ALAD (δ-aminolevulinic acid dehydratase) gene were examined to determine whether they could modify the relationship between blood lead and some renal parameters. It was found that one polymorphism was able to modify the association of blood lead concentrations with certain renal parameters. Further studies are needed to confirm this observation.
Environmental Health Perspectives, Oct. 2005, Vol.113, No.10, p.1313-1317. Illus. 33 ref.
Scarino A., Tardif R.
Modelling of carbon monoxide exposure
Modélisation de l'exposition au monoxyde de carbone [in French]
The Canadian standards review committee is questioning the possibility of revising downwards the regulations on exposure to carbon monoxide (CO). Many workers in Quebec are exposed to this substance, under many conditions, and a modification of the standard could have impacts on their health as well as economic consequences for the companies. Using a toxicokinetic model, this project studied the effect of various CO exposure scenarios on blood levels of carboxyhaemoglobin by taking into account peak exposures during a typical workday, the workload, the size of exposed individuals and their smoking habits. The results provide additional data for deciding upon a carbon monoxide exposure standard.
Institut de recherche Robert Sauvé en santé et en sécurité du travail (IRSST), 505 boul. de Maisonneuve Ouest, Montreal (Quebec) H3A 3C2, Canada, 2005. 20p. Illus. 7 ref. Price: CAD 5.35. Downloadable version (PDF format) free of charge.
http://www.irsst.qc.ca/files/documents/PubIRSST/R-433.pdf [in French]
Karakaya A.E., Ozcagli E., Ertas N., Sardas S.
Assessment of abnormal DNA repair responses and genotoxic effects in lead exposed workers
Genotoxic effects of lead were studied in blood cell samples from 23 workers of battery manufacturing plants and 23 unexposed controls. Tests included chromosomal aberration (CA) assay and X-ray induced challenge (XRC) assay to assess DNA damage and interference with DNA repair processes after an in vitro exposure of X-ray. Cases were classified into categories according to their blood lead levels. The CA frequencies in the exposed and control groups were not significantly different by the conventional CA assay, however, the XRC assay demonstrated significantly elevated CAs. Non-significant but reduced DNA repair responses were also observed in lead exposed workers. The results suggest that lead exposure may cause reduction in DNA repair capacity.
American Journal of Industrial Medicine, Apr. 2005, Vol.47, No.4, p.358-363. Illus. 23 ref.
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