Dermal and inhalatory occupational exposure to polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons with particular focus on carcinogenic risk. A contribution to data evaluation

Authors

  • Anna Cenni Laboratorio di Sanità Pubblica Area Vasta Toscana Sud Est, Siena

Keywords:

polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), occupational risk, excess carcinogenic risk

Abstract

Occupational exposure to polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) concern workers involved in various industrial activities: coal and oil transformation processes, activities that use products derived from them, exposure to exhaust from vehicle combustion or other combustion processes, exposure in asphalting processes, in the treatment of wood with creosote oil and others.
PAHs in coal combustion effluents, motor vehicle exhausts, used engine lubricating oils and tobacco smoke are mainly responsible for the carcinogenic potential of these mixtures.
Measurements of exposure by environmental and biological monitoring, to assess occupational risk due to their carcinogenicity, should take into account all the possible absorption routes, both the cutaneous and inhalation routes are significant.
The lack of occupational limit values in Legislative Decree 81/08 and in the European Directives (IOELV or BOELV) raises the question of how environmental and biological monitoring data can be managed to assess the risk associated with occupational exposure.
This work was written with the aim of presenting in summary what is reported in various documents, considered useful for assessing the risk of exposure to PAHs.
Starting from the “ECHA Scientific report for evaluation of limit values for polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons at the workplace”, published in 2022, where occupational respiratory exposure is mainly taken into consideration, the management of biological monitoring data and skin exposure is then discussed, as well as expression of the excess carcinogenic risk as a function of the extent of exposure through the definition of an exposure-risk relationship (ERR - exposure risk relationship).

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Published

2024-03-17

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Articoli