Health hazard evaluation report: HETA-2010-0118-3142, chemotherapy drug evaluation at a medical laboratory - Pennsylvania.
Couch-J; de Perio-MA
Cincinnati, OH: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Public Health Service, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, HETA 2010-0118-3142, 2011 Sep; :1-17
In June 2010, NIOSH received an HHE request from employees who were concerned about their potential exposure to chemotherapy drugs at a medical laboratory in Pennsylvania. The chemotherapy drugs were used to treat biological specimens to help determine which chemotherapy drug protocol would potentially benefit the patient the most. Employees were concerned with reproductive problems and adverse health effects associated with these drugs. We visited the medical laboratory on March 22-23, 2011. We observed work processes, practices, and conditions. We interviewed 51 employees about their health and their concerns related to chemotherapy drugs and collected surface wipe samples for cyclophosphamide, one of several chemotherapy drugs used at the medical laboratory. We detected no cyclophosphamide on work surfaces. While most of the 51 interviewed employees at the laboratory reported handling chemotherapy drugs during the course of their work, none reported chronic health effects associated with their work, and three reported experiencing acute symptoms during their work. Employees were aware of the potential risks from exposure to chemotherapy drugs and closely followed administrative procedures and PPE recommendations. We recommended that the medical laboratory continue to control exposures to chemotherapy drugs to levels as low as are reasonably achievable because the facility uses drugs that are considered hazardous [NIOSH 2010]. Control of these exposures can be validated by routine surface sampling for chemotherapy drugs used at the facility.
Region-3; Health-hazards; Region-3; Drugs; Chemotherapy; Medical-facilities; Medical-research; Laboratory-testing; Laboratories; Exposure-assessment; Employee-exposure; Employee-health; Reproductive-effects; Reproductive-hazards; Reproductive-system; Work-practices; Workplace-monitoring; Workplace-studies; Antineoplastic-agents; Hazardous-materials; Materials-handling; Medicinal-chemicals; Sampling; Control-methods; Control-systems; Health-protection; Health-surveys;
Author Keywords: Medical Laboratories; chemotherapy drugs; oncology; antineoplastic drugs; cancer research
Field Studies; Hazard Evaluation and Technical Assistance
NTIS Accession No.
National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health