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Measurement of Exposure to Arsenic in the Occupational Setting.

Higgins IT; Welch K; Oh M
NIOSH 1985 May:20 pages
A study of occupational exposure to arsenic (7440382) and mortality in copper smelter workers was conducted. The cohort consisted of 8047 smelter workers employed at the Anaconda Reduction Factory (SIC- 3331) in Montana for at least 12 months before December 31, 1956. The cohort had originally been followed through 1963. The present study was extended to January 1980 because of the company's interest in examining the lower end of the mortality curve for lung cancer. Company industrial hygiene sampling data for arsenic-trioxide (1327533) for the period 1943 to 1965 were reviewed. Exposures were categorized according to department. Exposure factors (defined as hours worked and hours exposed) were determined. Standardized mortality ratios (SMRs) for lung cancer were computed using the white male population of Montana as the reference population. Exposure factors were usually less than 0.5 in departments having high exposures, such as the roaster department (mean ambient arsenic concentration 80.466mg/m3). Exposure factors were around 1.0 in the departments with low exposure, such as the ferromanganese department with mean concentration 0.116mg/m3. For cumulative arsenic exposures of less than 500, 500, 2000, and 12000 micrograms per cubic meter years, the SMRs for lung cancer were 142, 179, 265, and 396, respectively. The authors note that a clear dose response for lung cancer mortality ranging from about 50 percent above that expected in the lowest exposure group to around four times that expected in the highest exposure group has been demonstrated.
Metalloids; Arsenic-compounds; Risk-analysis; Epidemiology; Occupational-exposure; Mortality-rates; Lung-cancer; Metal-refining; Dose-response;
7440-38-2; 1327-53-3;
Publication Date
Document Type
Conference/Symposia Proceedings;
Fiscal Year
SIC Code
Source Name
Proceedings of a Symposium on Epidemiologic and Health Risk Asessment, Columbia, Maryland, May 14-16, 1985, Centers for Disease Control/NIOSH, 20 pages, 3 references
Page last reviewed: February 11, 2022
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division