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Occupational disease in dentistry and chronic exposure to trace anesthetic gases.
Cohen EN; Brown BW; Wu ML; Whitcher CE; Brodsky JB; Gift HC; Greenfield W; Jones TW; Driscoll EJ
J Am Dent Assoc 1980 Jul; 101(1):21-31
Use of inhalation anesthetics and sedatives by health professionals in dentistry was surveyed. Inhalation anesthetic user and nonuser study groups of 15,000 each were queried about general health conditions, birth experiences, personal habits, and estimated hours of use of inhalation agents. In general, there were increased general health problems and reproductive difficulties for personnel exposed to anesthetic gases. Spouses were also affected. Male dentists exposed to anesthetics had liver, kidney, and neurological diseases at 1.7, 1.2, and 1.9 times the nonexposed rate, respectively. Their wives had spontaneous abortions at 1.5 times the nonexposed rate. Female dental assistants exposed to inhalation anesthetics had liver, kidney, and neurological diseases at 1.6, 1.7, and 2.8 times the nonexposed rates, respectively, and 2.3 times more spontaneous abortions. Congenital abnormalities were not increased in the offspring of exposed male dentists, and were insignificantly increased in female dental assistants, except when they were exposed to nitrous-oxide (10024972) alone. The latter exposure increased deformed births by 1.5 times. An indication of increased cancer risk was present for female chairside assistants. The authors recommend continued study and development of control measures to protect personnel.
NIOSH-Publication; NIOSH-Grant; Reproductive-system-disorders; Epidemiology; Anesthesia; Medical-personnel; Technical-personnel; Gases; Workplace-studies; Medical-research; Medical-treatment; Reproductive-effects; Physiology
Dr. Cohen, Department of Anesthesia, Stanford University, Stanford, CA 94305
Issue of Publication
The Journal of the American Dental Association
CA; NY; AL
Stanford University, Stanford, California
Page last reviewed: November 20, 2020
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division