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ISSN: 2161-0525

Journal of Environmental & Analytical Toxicology
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Research Article

Predictions of Blood Ethanol Levels Resulting From Occupational Use of Hydro Alcoholic Solutions and Ethanol-Based Varnishes

Josée Dumas-Campagna, Sami Haddad, Ginette Charest-Tardif and Robert Tardif*
Department of Environmental and Occupational Health, School of Public Health (ESPUM), University of Montréal, P.O. Box 6128, Main station, Montreal, Québec, Canada
Corresponding Author : Robert Tardif
Department of Environmental and Occupational Health
School of Public Health (ESPUM)
University of Montréal
P.O. Box 6128, Main station, Montreal
Québec, Canada
Tel: 514-343-6111 ext: 1515
E-mail: [email protected]
Received December 05, 2014; Accepted December 31, 2014; Published January 05, 2014
Citation: Dumas-Campagna J, Haddad S, Charest-Tardif G, Tardif R (2015) Predictions of Blood Ethanol Levels Resulting From Occupational Use of Hydro Alcoholic Solutions and Ethanol-Based Varnishes. J Environ Anal Toxicol 5:260. doi: 10.4172/2161-0525.1000260
Copyright: © 2015 Dumas-Campagna J, et al. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.

Abstract

The purpose of this study was to produce data on the ethanol concentrations in ambient air that result from hand rubbings with hydroalcoholic solutions (HAS) or the use of ethanol-based varnishes, and then to predict the blood ethanol levels (BELs) that result from these procedures. The concentration of ethanol in air at the volunteer’s nose after the application of HAS on hands was measured with five volunteers who performed five tests in two different environments: 1) in an inhalation chamber (air change rate ~18 h-1), and 2) in a closed office (poorly ventilated) with two different amounts (1.5 and 3 g) of HAS. In the case of varnish, 125 ml were applied on a 1-m2 wood surface placed in the middle of an inhalation chamber (n=4). The ethanol concentration was measured 20 cm and 40 cm from the center of the board for the next 60 minutes. As for HAS we noted a large intra- and inter-individual variability in ethanol levels in inhaled air. As expected the highest concentration in the inhalation chamber (~1250 ppm) was lower than in the office (~2352 ppm). For the application of the varnish, the ethanol concentrations greatly exceeded 1000 ppm for a short duration (< 4 min). Physiologically-based pharmacokinetic (PBPK) modeling of ethanol concentrations based on ethanol levels measured in inhaled air predicted the following maximum BELs in women (men): 0.39 and 0.37 mg/L (0.37 and 0.35 mg/L) in the office, and 0.26 and 0.42 mg/L (0.25 and 0.40 mg/L ) in the inhalation chamber for 1.5 g and 3 g, respectively. The total dose of ethanol absorbed estimated for a working day involving 42 hand rubbings with 1.5 or 3 g of HAS averaged 0.20 g. For the varnish, the predicted highest BELs for men and women were 0.77 and 0.79 mg/L, respectively. In all cases, the BELs remained below 1 mg/L. The results of this study should make it easier to assess the risk related to chronic inhalation of low levels of ethanol in the general population and among workers associated with these practices.

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