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Personal exposure to formaldehyde in laboratories

Dingle, P., Tan, R., Jones, J. and White, K. (2002) Personal exposure to formaldehyde in laboratories. Journal of Occupational Health and Safety - Australia and New Zealand, 18 (2). pp. 161-165.


There has been little research on the spatial distribution of formaldehyde in work environments and its relationship to personal exposure monitoring. The purpose of this study was to determine personal exposure to formaldehyde in five laboratories where formalin was used for tissue preservation, and to examine the relationship between fixed monitoring of formaldehyde and personal exposure in high-exposure occupational situations. It was found that fixed monitoring of formaldehyde in the laboratories tested was a good predictor of personal exposure and that one or two monitoring locations were adequate. However, depending on the worker's activity, stationary monitors may underpredict actual formaldehyde exposure. Significant levels of formaldehyde were found to infiltrate rooms or offices adjacent to the laboratories. This is of concern because people working on office tasks for extended periods may not take precautionary measures (such as wearing respiratory equipment).

Item Type: Journal Article
Murdoch Affiliation(s): School of Environmental Science
Publisher: CCH Australia Limited
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