(49/106) A profile of unintentional poisoning caused by household cleaning products, disinfectants and pesticides.
(50/106) Pollution comes home and gets personal: women's experience of household chemical exposure.
We report on interviews conducted with participants in a novel study about environmental chemicals in body fluids and household air and dust. Interviews reveal how personal and collective environmental history influence the interpretation of exposure data, and how participants fashion an emergent understanding of environmental health problems from the articulation of science and experience. To the illness experience literature, we contribute a framework for analyzing a new category of embodied narratives--"exposure experience"--that examines the mediating role of science. We update social scientific knowledge about social responses to toxic chemicals during a period in which science alters public understanding of chemical pollution. This article is among the first published accounts of participants' responses to learning personal exposure data, research identified as critical to environmental science and public health. Our findings raise the importance of reporting even uncertain science and underscore the value of a community-based reporting strategy (+info)
(51/106) Reducing hazardous cleaning product use: a collaborative effort.
Workplace hazards affecting vulnerable populations of low-wage and immigrant workers present a special challenge to the practice of occupational health. Unions, Coalition for Occupational Safety and Health (COSH) groups, and other organizations have developed worker-led approaches to promoting safety. Public health practitioners can provide support for these efforts. This article describes a successful multiyear project led by immigrant cleaning workers with their union, the Service Employees International Union (SEIU) Local 615, and with support from the Massachusetts COSH (MassCOSH) to address exposure to hazardous chemicals. After the union had identified key issues and built a strategy, the union and MassCOSH invited staff from the Massachusetts Department of Public Health's Occupational Health Surveillance Program (OHSP) to provide technical information about health effects and preventive measures. Results included eliminating the most hazardous chemicals, reducing the number of products used, banning mixing products, and improving safety training. OHSP's history of public health practice regarding cleaning products enabled staff to respond promptly. MassCOSH's staff expertise and commitment to immigrant workers allowed it to play a vital role. (+info)
(52/106) Pulmonary toxicity following exposure to waterproofing grout sealer.
INTRODUCTION: We report a large number of cases of pulmonary toxicity from 6 regional poison control centers associated with the use of a waterproofing-grout sealer. The identification of this illness occurred by means of the poison control center (PCC) national automated toxicosurveillance. MATERIALS AND METHODS: This is a retrospective case review of all cases of pulmonary toxicity following exposure to a waterproofing grout sealer from 6 regional PCCs including Michigan, Kentucky, Utah, Maine, Arizona, and Nebraska. The study period extended from June 1, 2005 to December 1, 2005. RESULTS: The vast majority of patients used the product at home (80%). Over half the patients presented within 3 hours of exposure. The most common presenting symptoms were shortness of breath (63%), cough (60%), and chest pain (44%). Wheezing (33%) and rales (23%) were the most common signs of clinical toxicity. One patient required endotracheal intubation. Thirty-seven percent of patients had signs of acute pneumonitis on initial chest x-ray. The mean presenting oxygen saturation was 89.5%. The most common treatment measures used were supplemental oxygen, bronchodilator therapy, oral steroids, and antibiotics. Over half of the study group required hospital admission. CONCLUSION: The majority of patients in this study were adults using the product at home. Over one-third of patients had an abnormal x-ray upon presentation. Over half of the study group required hospital admission following exposure to this product. Medical professionals should be aware of the potential for pulmonary toxicity due to waterproofing aerosols. (+info)
(53/106) Social referencing "Mr. Yuk": the use of emotion in a poison prevention program.
(54/106) A nano-selenium reactive barrier approach for managing mercury over the life-cycle of compact fluorescent lamps.
Compact fluorescent lamps contain small quantities of mercury, release of which can lead to human exposures of potential concern in special cases involving multiple lamps, confined spaces, or young children. The exposure scenarios typically involve solid lamp debris that slowly releases elemental mercury vapor to indoor spaces. Here we propose and demonstrate a reactive barrier approach for the suppression of that mercury release, and demonstrate the concept using uncoated amorphous nanoselenium as the reactive component. Multilayer structures containing an impregnated reactive layer and a mercury vapor barrier are fabricated, characterized, and evaluated in three exposure prevention scenarios: carpeted break sites, disposal/recycling bags, and boxes as used for retail sales, shipping, and collection. The reactive barriers achieve significant suppression of mercury release to indoor spaces in each of thethree scenarios. The nanoselenium barriers also exhibit a unique indicator function that can reveal the location of Hg contamination by local reaction-induced change in optical properties. The article also presents results on equilibrium Hg vapor pressure above lamp debris, mathematical modeling of reaction and transport processes within reactive barriers, and landfill stability of nanoselenium and its reaction products. (+info)
(55/106) Viability of commercially available bleach for water treatment in developing countries.
(56/106) A complicated hospitalization following dilute ammonium chloride ingestion.
INTRODUCTION: Unintentional ingestions of dilute (<7.5%) cleaning solutions containing ammonium chloride typically do not cause serious harm. We present a case of an intentional ingestion of a dilute ammonium chloride solution resulting in significant morbidity. CASE REPORT: A 60-year-old woman with bipolar disorder presented one hour after an intentional ingestion of approximately 15 fluid ounces (500 mL) of an algae and odor humidifier treatment containing a total of 2.25% ethyl ammonium chloride. Initial complaints included nausea with a single episode of nonbilious, nonbloody emesis, mild shortness of breath, and chest and epigastric pain. Physical exam was remarkable for bilateral wheezing and epigastric tenderness. An emergent endoscopy demonstrated a Grade 2b caustic injury in the esophagus and a Grade 3b injury in the stomach. Due to persistent cough, copious oral secretions, and worsening hoarseness, the patient was intubated and admitted to the ICU. Her course was complicated by mild hypotension, nonanion gap metabolic acidosis, and oliguria treated successfully with intravenous (IV) fluids. She also developed bilateral pneumonias later in the hospital course. Bedside bronchoscopy showed laryngeal edema and mucosal injury to the segmental level. The patient underwent tracheostomy on hospital day 6. An upper GI swallow study revealed poor esophageal motility in the mid- to lower third of the esophagus. The patient gradually tolerated oral fluids and on hospital day 20 had her tracheostomy tube removed. The patient was subsequently transferred to the psychiatric ward on hospital day 22. CONCLUSION: Intentional ingestions of dilute ammonium chloride solutions can cause serious injury to the gastrointestinal tract and pulmonary systems, which can result in a complicated and prolonged hospitalization. (+info)