Health hazard evaluation report: HETA-2010-0012-3125, evaluation of exposure to the chemosterilant bisazir among biological technicians - Michigan.
Aristeguieta C; Couch J
Cincinnati, OH: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Public Health Service, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, HETA 2010-0012-3125, 2011 Mar; :1-17
In October 2009, NIOSH received an HHE request from a federal government agency concerning employees' potential exposure to the chemosterilant bisazir at a biological station in Michigan. Bisazir is used to sterilize male sea lampreys, an invasive aquatic parasite of the Great Lakes. We evaluated the biological station on May 19-20, 2010. We walked through the facility and observed work processes, practices, and conditions. We spoke with employees about health and workplace concerns related to bisazir and collected samples for bisazir from air, water, surfaces, gloves, and urine. We detected no bisazir in general area air samples (MDC < / = 0.8 microg/m3), PBZ air samples (MDC < / = 2.0 microg/m3), or cotton glove samples (LOD = 10 microg/sample). No bisazir was detected in the employees' urine samples. No bisazir was detected in bulk water samples taken from tanks that housed bisazir-treated sea lampreys (LOD = 0.4 microg/L). We found that employees were aware of the potential risks from exposure to bisazir and that they followed administrative procedures and PPE recommendations. Because we sampled over just 2 workdays and during only one sea lamprey spawning season, additional air and surface sampling during the upcoming 2011 season would be useful to confirm these results. If no bisazir is detected in these additional samples and the good work practices and engineering controls we observed continue, management could consider downgrading the level of PPE required for working in the injection and tank rooms. The agency had previously used semen analysis to identify possible adverse reproductive effects, but discontinued this program in 2009 as semen analysis is not an appropriate measure of the effects of bisazir exposure.
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