pH increase observed in exhaled breath condensate from welding fume exposure.
Boyce-PD; Kim-JY; Weissman-DN; Hunt-J; Christiani-DC
J Occup Environ Med 2006 Apr; 48(4):353-356
Objectives: We sought to investigate changes in exhaled breath condensate (EBC) pH in healthy workers exposed to welding fumes. Methods: Fourteen exposed participants (median age 39 years, 5 smokers) and 8 nonexposed controls (median age 44 years, 1 smoker) were monitored at an apprentice welding school. Exposure to fine particulate matter less than 2.5 Ám (PM2.5) was assessed using cyclone samplers. EBC samples were collected at baseline and at the end of the work shift. EBC samples were deaerated using argon and pH values were measured using standard pH microelectrodes. Results: Mean +/- SEM PM2.5 levels were 1.17 +/- 0.18 mg/m3 for exposed subjects and 0.03 +/- 0.01 mg/m3 for controls. Baseline median (range) EBC pH values for the control and exposed group were similar (P = 0.86), 7.21 (4.91 to 8.26), and 7.39 (4.85 to 7.79), respectively. The exposed subjects had a small-but-marginally significant (P = 0.07) pre- to post-work shift increase in pH of 0.28, whereas the control group showed a minimal increase of only 0.03 (P = 0.56). Compared with the control group, the exposed group had a median cross-shift pH increase of 0.25 (P = 0.49). Conclusions: The aerosolized fine particulate matter contained in metal fumes may be associated with an acute increase in EBC pH values. Further study is necessary to investigate the acute rise in EBC pH after acute exposure to welding fume.
Welders; Welding; Fumes; Breathing; Exposure-assessment; Particulate-sampling-methods; Particulates; Aerosol-particles; Metal-compounds; Metal-fumes; Metal-workers; Respiratory-system-disorders; Airway-obstruction; Airborne-particles; Cyclone-air-samplers; Smoking; Acidity
Paul D. Boyce, Department of Environmental Health, Occupational Health Program, Harvard School of Public Health, Boston, MA 02115
7440-37-1; 7439-95-4; 7439-96-5; 7440-09-7; 7783-61-1; 7440-23-5; 7440-32-6; 7439-98-7; 7440-66-6
Disease and Injury: Asthma and Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease
Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine