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Health hazard evaluation determination report: HHE-77-13, West Virginia University Medical Center, Morgantown, West Virginia.
Morgantown, WV: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Public Health Service, Centers for Disease Control, National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, HHE 77-13, 1980 Jul; :1-19
In response to a request made by the Director of the Operating Room of the west Virginia University Medical Center School of Medicine, personnel of The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health performed environmental evaluation to determine the extent of exposure experienced by operating room personnel to nitrous oxide and halogenated anesthetic agents. A preliminary study was conducted before installation of a waste anesthetic gas and vapor evacuation system and a follow-up study was conducted to determine the effectiveness of the completed system. Criteria used for this evaluation are NIOSH recommended standards for occupational exposure to waste anesthetic gases and vapors. A time weighted average concentration of 25 parts per million during administration is advised as the upper boundary for exposure to nitrous oxide. Halogenated anesthetic agents are advised to be controlled so as not to exceed 2 ppm when used alone and 0.5 ppm when used with nitrous oxide. Personal samples taken during the follow-up study substantiate the vast improvement of the operating room working environment created by the installation of a waste gas and vapor evacuation system. More improvement will be realized with installation of a routine equipment maintenance program and a minimization of gas leakage as a result of improved individual anesthesiologist work practices.
Region-3; Hazard-confirmed; Exposure-limits; Hospital-operating-room; Anesthetic-administration
Field Studies; Health Hazard Evaluation
NTIS Accession No.
National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health
Page last reviewed: September 2, 2020
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division