Skip directly to search Skip directly to A to Z list Skip directly to page options Skip directly to site content

NIOSHTIC-2 Publications Search

Search Results

Fixed obstructive lung disease among workers in the flavor-manufacturing industry --- California, 2004--2007.

Authors
Materna-B; Quint-J; Prudhomme-J; Payne-S; Harrison-R; Welsh-L; Kochie-M; Howard-K; Kreiss-K; Kanwal-R; Sahakian-N; Kullman-G; McKernan-L; Dunn-K; Bailey-R; Kim-T
Source
MMWR 2007 Apr; 56(16):389-393
NIOSHTIC No.
20031852
Abstract
Bronchiolitis obliterans, a rare and life-threatening form of fixed obstructive lung disease, is known to be caused by exposure to noxious gases in occupational settings and has been described in workers in the microwave-popcorn industry who were exposed to artificial butter-flavoring chemicals, including diacetyl (1,2). In August 2004, the California Department of Health Services (CDHS) and Division of Occupational Safety and Health (Cal/OSHA) received the first report of a bronchiolitis obliterans diagnosis in a flavor-manufacturing worker in California. In April 2006, a second report was received of a case in a flavor-manufacturing worker from another company. Neither worker was employed in the microwave-popcorn industry; both were workers in the flavor-manufacturing industry, which produces artificial butter flavoring and other flavors such as cherry, almond, praline, jalapeno, and orange. Both workers had handled pure diacetyl, an ingredient in artificial butter and other flavorings, and additional chemicals involved in the manufacturing process. Studies have indicated that exposure to diacetyl causes severe respiratory epithelial injury in animals (3--5). Because the manufacture of flavorings involves more than 2,000 chemicals, workers in the general flavor-manufacturing industry are exposed to more chemicals than workers in the microwave-popcorn industry, which primarily uses butter flavorings. Food flavorings are designated "generally recognized as safe" when approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (6); flavorings are not known to put consumers at risk for lung disease. This report describes the first two cases of bronchiolitis obliterans in flavor-manufacturing workers in California, the findings of the public health investigation, and the actions taken by state and federal agencies to prevent future cases of occupational bronchiolitis obliterans. To identify cases and reduce risk for lung disease from occupational exposure to flavorings, a timely, effective response is needed, including medical surveillance, exposure monitoring, and reduced exposure.
Keywords
Respiratory-system-disorders; Pulmonary-system-disorders; Lung-disease; Food-additives; Food-processing-workers; Foodstuff; Organic-compounds; Spirometry; Airway-obstruction; Ketones; Surveillance-programs
CODEN
MMWRB6
CAS No.
431-03-8
Publication Date
20070427
Document Type
Journal Article; Trade
Funding Type
Cooperative Agreement
Fiscal Year
2007
NTIS Accession No.
NTIS Price
Identifying No.
Cooperative-Agreement-Number-U60-OH-008468
Issue of Publication
16
ISSN
0892-3787
NIOSH Division
DRDS; DSHEFS; DART
Source Name
Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report
State
CA; WV
Performing Organization
Public Health Institute
TOP