Ethylene oxide (EtO) is a powerful disinfectant and sterilant for heat-sensitive surgical items and instruments.
Its use in hospitals constitutes an important source of occupational exposure that is sometimes underestimated, such as in cases of EtO device malfunction when the safety rules of procedure are not strictly followed or when individual or collective protective equipment is lacking.
We carried out a descriptive study of the health care workers who were assigned to EtO sterilization units of the Lille University Hospital Centre in Lille, France (n=16).
Before the modification of the sterilization units in the development of a single, central sterilization site, we studied the workplaces, occupational conditions, and work procedures of the health care workers exposed to EtO.
The aim was to assess the risk ofEtO overexposure of the workers in order to improve workers'health and security in the future sterilization center.
The study was based on a physical examination, a questionnaire covering each subject's personal and occupational history, and a complete ocular examination.
For occupational conditions, the studies of each workplace were also performed by the occupational physician.
Area and personal breathing air samplings were performed at each exposure site. (...)
Mots-clés Pascal : Gaz toxique, Désinfectant, Milieu hospitalier, Personnel sanitaire, Exposition professionnelle, Médecine travail, Oxirane, Condition travail, Homme, Teneur air ambiant, Toxicité, Surveillance biologique, Oeil pathologie, Stérilisation chimique
Mots-clés Pascal anglais : Toxic gas, Disinfecting agent, Hospital environment, Health staff, Occupational exposure, Occupational medicine, Ethylene oxide, Working condition, Human, Ambient air concentration, Toxicity, Biological monitoring, Eye disease, Chemical sterilization
Notice produite par :
Inist-CNRS - Institut de l'Information Scientifique et Technique
Cote : 99-0356879
Code Inist : 002B03L02. Création : 14/12/1999.