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Health hazard evaluation report: HETA-84-090-1533, Dental Offices, Wellston, Ohio.

Authors
Zey-JN; Lichty-PD
Source
Cincinnati, OH: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Public Health Service, Centers for Disease Control, National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, HETA 84-090-1533, D1984 Nov; :1-20
NIOSHTIC No.
00144921
Abstract
Environmental and breathing zone samples were analyzed for mercury (7439976) in a dental office (SIC-8021) in January, 1984. The survey was requested by the County Health Office out of concern of mercury exposure to a pregnant dental assistant. Interviews were conducted with five office personnel. Breathing zone mercury concentrations were 3.8 to 18 micrograms per cubic meter (microg/m3). The OSHA standard for mercury is 100microg/m3. Environmental (surface) mercury concentrations generally ranged from 5 to 148microg/m3, the higher readings occurring in areas of high mercury use. Surface mercury concentrations up to 350microg/m3 were found on a powered vacuum cleaner used to clean the office carpeting. None of the employees reported any symptoms of mercury poisoning. Previously determined urinary mercury concentrations were available for four of the workers. All concentrations were below toxic ranges. The authors conclude that a health hazard due to mercury does not exist for nonpregnant dental office employees. No safe limit of exposure has been established for pregnant individuals. The pregnant individual should not be exposed to mercury. Recommendations included removal of carpeting, especially in high mercury use areas, and cleaning up spilled mercury droplets using a vacuum system with a water trap.
Keywords
NIOSH-Author; NIOSH-Health-Hazard-Evaluation; NIOSH-Technical-Assistance-Report; Hazards-Unconfirmed; Dentistry; Region-5; X-ray-absorption; Inhalants; Environmental-contamination; X-ray-diagnosis; HETA-84-090-1533; Author Keywords: Offices of Dentists; Mercury; Mercury-Hygienic-Techniques; X-Ray
CAS No.
7439-97-6
Publication Date
19841101
Document Type
Field Studies; Hazard Evaluation and Technical Assistance
Fiscal Year
1985
NTIS Accession No.
PB85-208254
NTIS Price
A03
Identifying No.
HETA-84-090-1533
NIOSH Division
DSHEFS
SIC Code
8021
Source Name
National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health
State
OH
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