Biological versus ambient exposure monitoring of creosote facility workers

Jonathan Borak, Greg Sirianni, Howard Cohen, Susan Chemerynski, Frans Jongeneelen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Traditional methods for monitoring occupational creosote exposure have focused on inhalation. However, there is evidence that dermal exposure contributes importantly to total systemic dose, as measured by biological monitoring methods. This study was conducted to further characterize the relationships between inhalation and dermal exposures to creosote, and to compare traditional ambient exposure monitoring versus biological monitoring in 36 creosote-exposed wood treatment workers. Full-shift personal air samples were obtained, along with post-shift and next-day urine measurements for 1-hydroxypyrene. There was little or no correlation between airborne measures and urinary 1-hydroxypyrene (r2 = 0.05 to 0.35). More than 90% of 1-hydroxypyrene could be attributed to dermal exposure. These data indicate that traditional monitoring methods may be inappropriate for creosote workers, raising concerns about the adequacy of methods currently mandated by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)310-319
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of occupational and environmental medicine
Issue number4
StatePublished - Jan 1 2002

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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