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J Occup Environ Hyg. 2008 Apr;5(4):239-49. doi: 10.1080/15459620801907840.

Occupational risk management of engineered nanoparticles.

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National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Cincinnati, Ohio 45226-1998, USA.


The earliest and most extensive societal exposures to engineered nanoparticles are likely to occur in the workplace. Until toxicologic and health effects research moves forward to characterize more broadly the potential hazards of nanoparticles and to provide a scientific basis for appropriate control of nanomaterials in the workplace, current and future workers may be at risk from occupational exposures. This article reviews a conceptual framework for occupational risk management as applied to engineered nanomaterials and describes an associated approach for controlling exposures in the presence of uncertainty. The framework takes into account the potential routes of exposure and factors that may influence biological activity and potential toxicity of nanomaterials; incorporates primary approaches based on the traditional industrial hygiene hierarchy of controls involving elimination or substitution, engineering controls, administrative controls, and use of personal protective equipment; and includes valuable secondary approaches involving health surveillance and medical monitoring.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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