- Safety and Health Topics
Formaldehyde exposure is most common through gas-phase inhalation. However, it can also occur through liquid-phase skin absorption. Workers may be exposed during direct production, treatment of materials, and production of resins. Health care professionals; pathology and histology technicians; and teachers and students who handle preserved specimens are potentially at high risk. Consumers may receive exposures from building materials, cosmetics, home furnishings, and textiles. The following references provide information about the management of occupational exposures to formaldehyde.
- Chemical Sampling Information. OSHA, (January 14, 1999). Presents, in concise form, data on a large number of chemical substances that may be encountered in industrial hygiene investigations. Basic reference for industrial hygienists engaged in OSHA field activity.
- OSHA Occupational Chemical Database. OSHA maintains this chemical database as a convenient reference for the occupational safety and health community. It compiles information from several government agencies and organizations. This database originally was developed by OSHA in cooperation with EPA.
- Dermal Exposure. OSHA Safety and Health Topics Page. Addresses dermal hazards to chemicals that can cause dermatitis or otherwise damage the skin, as well as to chemicals that can enter the body through intact skin and cause other toxic effects.
- Medical Management Guidelines for Formaldehyde (HCHO). Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR). Includes routes of exposure, health effects, prehospital and emergency department management, as well as patient information.
- Patient Information Sheet. Provides information for persons who may have been exposed to formaldehyde gas or solution (formalin).
OSHA has developed and validated methods for use by the Salt Lake Technical Center (SLTC) laboratory. The following method has been adopted by many laboratories for the analysis of chemical compounds.
- Acrolein and/or Formaldehyde. Method 52, (June 1989). Includes validated sampling and analysis method for the determination of formaldehyde in workplace air.
For additional information, see OSHA's Sampling and Analysis Safety and Health Topics Page.
National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH)
- NIOSH Manual of Analytical Methods (NMAM). NMAM is a collection of methods for sampling and analysis of contaminants in workplace air, and in the blood and urine of workers who are occupationally exposed. NMAM also includes chapters on quality assurance, sampling, portable instrumentation, etc.