Document Detail


Determination of firefighter exposure to polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons and benzene during fire fighting using measurement of biological indicators.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  12018402     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
Abstract/OtherAbstract:
In accomplishing their duties, firefighters are potentially exposed to a vast array of toxic combustion and pyrolysis products such as benzene, carbon monoxide, acrolein, nitrogen dioxide, and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons. Exposure to PAH and benzene was assessed by means of urinary measurements of 1-hydroxypyrene and t,t-muconic acid, respectively. All urine samples were collected from 43 firefighters during a period extending for 20 h following the end of exposure during a fire. A control sample was also obtained from each participant after at least four days without involvement in fire fighting activities. Only one control 1-hydroxypyrene measurement exceeded the value of 0.32 micromol/mol creatinine considered as the 95th percentile of a normal reference population in this study. Following exposure, 38 percent of the maximum values of all samples collected from each firefighter exceeded this reference value. The highest single value observed in this study was 3.6 micromol/mol creatinine. None of the control samples had a t,t-muconic acid concentration above the limit of detection. A large number (81%) of post-fire samples also had nonquantifiable concentrations of this metabolite. Among 43 firefighters in this study, 17 had measurable excretion of this metabolite in any of the urine samples after fire fighting and, of the latter group, only 6 had t,t-muconic acid concentrations exceeding 1.1 mmol/mol creatinine, a value considered to correspond to a benzene-air concentration of approximately 1 ppm according to the literature. There is clear evidence that fire fighting activities are associated with exposure to PAH above environmental background, as assessed by 1-hydroxypyrene measurements, despite the use of protective equipment. However, in comparison with observations made in other cohorts of industrial workers with known polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons exposure, firefighters' exposure in this study was low. Similarly, based on t,t-muconic acid determinations, exposure to benzene was rather low in this study. For both contaminants, observation of low exposure could be due to either low concentrations of the contaminant during fire fighting or to the efficiency of protective equipment worn.
Authors:
Chantal Caux; Cindy O'Brien; Claude Viau
Publication Detail:
Type:  Journal Article; Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't    
Journal Detail:
Title:  Applied occupational and environmental hygiene     Volume:  17     ISSN:  1047-322X     ISO Abbreviation:  Appl Occup Environ Hyg     Publication Date:  2002 May 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2002-05-20     Completed Date:  2002-06-04     Revised Date:  2006-11-15    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  9103256     Medline TA:  Appl Occup Environ Hyg     Country:  England    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  379-86     Citation Subset:  IM    
Affiliation:
Department of Environmental and Occupational Health, University of Montreal, Quebec, Canada.
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MeSH Terms
Descriptor/Qualifier:
Adult
Benzene / metabolism*
Fires*
Humans
Male
Middle Aged
Occupational Exposure*
Ontario
Polycyclic Hydrocarbons, Aromatic / urine*
Questionnaires
Chemical
Reg. No./Substance:
0/Polycyclic Hydrocarbons, Aromatic; 71-43-2/Benzene

From MEDLINE®/PubMed®, a database of the U.S. National Library of Medicine


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