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Should dust samplers mimic human lung deposition?

Soderholm SC; McCawley MA
Appl Occup Environ Hyg 1990 Dec; 5(12):829-830
The early history of airborne dust measurements was briefly reviewed and the cases both for and against designing dust samplers to mimic the actual deposition of the particles in the human lung were advanced. In arguments for the measure, it was stated that the Air Sampling Procedures (ASP) Committee of the ACGIH recognizes that in epidemiological studies it is necessary to estimate the delivered dose as closely as possible which is best accomplished by sampling with a cascade impactor and determining the composition of the collected dust as a function of particle size. For routine monitoring to determine whether particle concentrations are below established health based limits, the ASP Committee suggested that atmospheres be characterized using IPM, TPM, and RPM samplers (inhalable, thoracic, or respirable particular matter). One advantage of measuring size distributions with high or low resolution devices instead of developing mean dose samples is that all dust sampling for epidemiological studies and for routine hazard evaluations would require only two types of hardware and expertise in their use. In arguing against the measure, various assumptions of those encouraging the measure were critically reviewed. These included the assumption that dose is a function of the size fraction deposited, that a representative route of entry can be selected for the aerosol, that deposition can be represented for the population by some average curve, and that measured exposure should be in constant proportion to dose. It is suggested that future research develop particle size selective sampling criteria to determine the size distribution of the aerosol and apply both deposition and penetration criteria to determine if the correlation between measured exposure and response can be enhanced.
NIOSH-Author; Airborne-dusts; Dust-exposure; Aerosol-sampling; Tissue-distribution; Body-burden; Respiratory-system-disorders; Lung-function; Pulmonary-function; Dust-samplers; Particulate-sampling-methods
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Applied Occupational and Environmental Hygiene
Page last reviewed: September 11, 2020
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division