A part of a book.
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Highly contaminated workplaces
Title of the book
Environmental mycology in public health : fungi and mycotoxins risk assessment and management
Address of publication
Viegas Carla, Pinheiro Ana Catarina, Sabino Raquel, Viegas Susana, Brandao Joao, Verissimo Cristina
Occupational exposures to fungi are very frequent and are known to cause chronic or acute symptoms. To better assess health risks related to fungal exposure, it is crucial to characterize precisely the airborne fungal community in terms of quantity and composition. The objective of this chapter is to synthesize existing knowledge of airborne fungal contamination in various occupational settings. We analyzed 134 papers published between 2000 and 2014 focusing on five different work sectors considered as highly contaminated (i.e., more than 1000 fungal particles/m3): animal confinement buildings, sawmills, waste handling, the food industry, and grain/plant handling. Results show that harvesting grain, washing cheese, and handling salami seem to be the occupational situations with the worst potential for exposure. Moreover, a lack of standardized sampling and analysis methods among countries and even within the same country is highlighted. Occupational exposure limit values do not exist. Recommendations and guidelines based on culture-dependent methods, which are now recognized to underestimate true concentrations, are proposed. Those recommendations are frequently exceeded and protective measures are not always easy to implement.
Fungi , Aerosols , Occupational exposure , Workplace , Review
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