Reproductive health effects of glycol ether exposure in the semiconductor industry.
Occup Hyg 1996 Jan; 2(1-6):367-372
A large historical cohort investigation was performed to analyze pregnancy outcomes among current and former women employees 18 to 44 years old who became pregnant while working in the semiconductor industry between 1986 and 1989. At the same time a prospective cohort analyzed spontaneous abortion (SAB) rates and menstrual cycle outcomes among 403 current women employees in the semiconductor industry. An industrial hygiene/exposure assessment component was integrated into the entire process that was responsible for classifying exposure status of all study subjects. While an association was identified between SAB and exposure to photoresist or developer solvents, as these chemicals and their exposure are highly correlated, the current author states that it is not possible to analyze separately the associations of the individual components of ethylene glycol ethers (EGE), n-butyl-acetate (123864) (nBA), and xylene (1330207) with SAB. It seemed most likely that EGE was the agent causally associated with SAB among women exposed to the photoresist and developer solvents as it was the predominant component, being present in substantially greater percentages than nBA or xylene. The current findings did not show a consistent association of exposure to propylene glycol ethers (PGE) and SAB, but due to the lower prevalence of PGE exposure, the author cautions that these findings should be viewed carefully.
Reproductive-hazards; Reproductive-system-disorders; Risk-factors; Semiconductors; Occupational-exposure; Humans; Solvent-vapors; Epidemiology
University of California - Davis