Conference on medical screening and biological monitoring for the effects of exposure in the workplace, July 1984, Part II.
The papers presented at the Conference on Medical Screening and Biological Monitoring for the Effects of Exposure in the Workplace (July 1984) reflected problems associated with medical screening and biomonitoring for the effects of occupational exposure. There were three primary topics considered at the conference. The first dealt with the legal, social and ethical issues related to medical screening and medical monitoring. In this topic, selection screening, the problem of proving work incapacity and the ethical issues related to establishing such proof, value of screening data, and the right of a person to work versus the public interest were emphasized. The second topic concerned issues in assessment and evaluation of screening programs. The exercise tolerance test as a screening test in coronary heart disease, use of chest radiography for low back pain screening, screening for bladder cancer, diagnostic techniques for use in certain diseases, including neuropathies, hepatotoxicity, renal diseases, dermatologic screening, damage to germ cells and genetic damage from exposure to benzo(a)pyrene (50328), computerized screening for neurobehavioral changes in the workplace, detection of early pregnancy and fetal loss, screening workers for ability to use respirators, and respiratory function tests in the screening of workers were emphasized. Occupational ecogenetics, with emphasis on the testing of genetic susceptibility, interactions between genes and environment in the workplace, epidemiological use of genetic screening in the workplace, chromosome alterations as markers of exposure and effect, and immunoassays to adducts of benzo(a)pyrene and DNA in the biomonitoring of workers exposed to carcinogens, comprised the third major topic of the conference. Several definitions of screening were offered, which emphasized the different points of view among the participants.