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Request for assistance in preventing asthma and death from diisocyanate exposure.

Musgrave K; Piacitelli C; Kullman G; Berardinelli S Jr.; Dieffenbach A; Parker J
Morgantown, WV: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Public Health Service, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, DHHS (NIOSH) Publication No. 96-111, 1996 Mar; :1-13
This request for assistance was issued in response to the hazard of workers being exposed to diisocyanates which may result in serious or fatal respiratory complications. The most common diisocyanates included toluene-diisocyanate (584849) (TDI), methylene-bisphenyl- isocyanate (101688) (MDI), and hexamethylene-diisocyanate (822060) (HDI). Current exposure limits were provided, and the health effects of exposure were described, including irritation, sensitization, asthma, hypersensitivity pneumonitis, and cancer. Case reports on workers who developed isocyanate induced asthma, respiratory disease, and death were provided. These included a 37 year old self employed car painter who developed occupational asthma due to exposure, suffered a severe asthma attack, and died. Case 2 involved two police officers who developed chronic bronchospastic disorder after exposure at a highway spill of TDI. Case 3 involved three workers in the paint shop of an assembly facility. Case 4 was the fatality of a maintenance worker who became ill following repair of an MDI foaming system. Case 5 involved ten workers at an engineering wood products facility who developed occupational asthma from exposure to MDI. Case 6 involved nine coal miners who developed symptoms after spraying MDI based rock glues, and the seventh case involved at least 13 cases of asthma in staff members at a school after isocyanate coating materials were applied to the school roof. Recommendations are offered to lessen the incidence of similar cases.
Isocyanates; Painting; Maintenance-workers; Respiratory-system-disorders; Law-enforcement-workers; Bronchial-asthma; Occupational-exposure; Occupational-hazards
584-84-9; 101-68-8; 822-06-0
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Numbered Publication; Alert
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DHHS (NIOSH) Publication No. 96-111
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National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health
Page last reviewed: October 9, 2020
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division