Nitrous Oxide Exposure of Health Care Personnel in the Operating Rooms and Intensive Care Units in Hospitals in Macedonia
Keywords:nitrous oxide, TWA exposure, anaesthesiologists, nurses, substandard
AIM: To determine average personal exposure to nitrous oxide for anaesthesiologists and nurses working in operating rooms (ORs) and intensive care units (ICU) in Clinical Hospital in Shtip, ENT University Clinic in Skopje and General Hospital in Kochani.
METHODS: To determine TWA exposure nitrous oxide concentration was continuously measured over 8 hours shift within breathing zone of the subjects involved, using the handheld electrochemical instrument with data logging option. Results obtained were statistically processed.
RESULTS: Highest TWA exposures (well above RELs) were found for nurses and anaesthesiologists in ORs in CH â€“ Shtip, because of high workload in substandard conditions. TWA exposures in CH â€“ Kochani were found to be significantly lower although in substandard conditions, mostly due to lower workload. TWA exposures found in ORs in ENT UC â€“ Skopje is within RELs due to good work practices and proper ORs equipment.CONCLUSIONS: Study indicated significant exposure of personal working in substandard ORs in CH â€“ Shtip. Applying proper work practices and maintain control equipment (general ventilation and scavenging systems) in operation, could provide for safe work environment.
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