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Risk assessment of dermal exposure of greenhouse workers to pesticides after re-entry

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Author: Brouwer, R. · Marquart, H. · Mik, G. de · Hemmen, J.J. van
Institution: Medisch Biologisch Laboratorium TNO Instituut CIVO-Toxicologie en Voeding TNO
Source:Archives of Environmental Contamination and Toxicology, 3, 23, 273-280
Identifier: 231939
Keywords: Biology · Abamectin · Bupirimate · Pesticide · Unclassified drug · Agricultural worker · Dodemorph · Gas chromatography · Glove · Health hazard · High performance liquid chromatography · Major clinical study · Risk assessment · Skin disease · Agriculture · Fungicides, Industrial · Health Status Indicators · Human · Insecticides · Ivermectin · Mesylates · Morpholines · Occupational Exposure · Skin · Support, Non-U.S. Gov't


On 18 farms for rose culture in greenhouses in The Netherlands, dermal exposure of hands and forearms to abamectin (avermectin B1), dodemorph (4- cyclododecyl-2,6-dimethylmorpholinium acetate) and bupirimate (5-butyl-2- (ethylamino)-6-methyl-4-pyrimidinyl dimethylsulphate) was measured during crop activities. Dermal exposure during cutting (75 workers) amounted to 13 μg/h, 1.8 mg/h, and 2.2 mg/h for abamectin, dodemorph and bupirimate, respectively. Dermal exposure to abamectin and dodemorph during sorting (21 workers) and bundling (30 workers) was comparable with that during cutting. From the dependence of dermal exposure on the amount of dislodgeable foliar residue (DFR) a transfer factor was estimated to be 1,200, 4,550, and 2,400 cm2/h for abamectin, dodemorph and bupirimate, respectively. For sorting and bundling these factors were of the same order of magnitude. The results suggested that work rate was also a determinant of dermal exposure. The within-farm variance of dermal exposure during cutting appeared to account for approximately 30% of the unexplained part of the variation remaining after regression on DFR and application technique. The final unexplained part in the variation of dermal exposure during cutting was amongst others due to the variation between the different farms in which the measurements were performed. A health risk evaluation of the observed levels of dermal exposure after re-entry of greenhouses led to the conclusion that a health hazard may exist, especially after application of high rates of relatively toxic pesticides which easily penetrate the skin. Chemicals/CAS: 4-cyclododecyl-2,6-dimethylmorpholine acetate, 31717-87-0; abamectin, 71751-41-2; bupirimate, 41483-43-6; Fungicides, Industrial; Insecticides; Ivermectin, 70288-86-7; Mesylates; Morpholines