The genotoxic risk in health care workers occupationally exposed to cytotoxic drugs - A comprehensive evaluation by the SCE assay

Nevenka Kopjar, Vilena Kašuba, Ružica Rožgaj, Davor Želježić, Mirta Milić, Snježana Ramić, Vesna Pavlica, Sanja Milković-Kraus

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Present study aimed at an integral assessment of sister chromatid exchange (SCE) frequencies in the health care workers occupationally exposed to cytostatics. The results of 500 individual analyses were evaluated. Drug handling practice was investigated in parallel and the results showed that cytostatics are mostly prepared outside hospital pharmacy (98%) and mainly handled by nurses (96%). Mean frequency of SCE was 5.63 ± 2.28, while HFC represented 9.65% of the cells analysed. Both values were higher compared to previously established control values for Croatian population. The duration of exposure, profession, age, gender, smoking habit, medical exposures, and simultaneous exposure to other occupational mutagens significantly contributed to SCE and HFC values. The usefulness both biomarkers in the assessment of cytogenetic damage is confirmed. Since current practice in Croatian hospitals does not include regular monitoring of workplaces, to ensure maximal occupational safety, a surveillance on exposed health care workers, including periodic biomonitoring, is recommended.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)462-479
Number of pages18
JournalJournal of Environmental Science and Health - Part A Toxic/Hazardous Substances and Environmental Engineering
Volume44
Issue number5
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2009

Keywords

  • Cytotoxic drugs
  • Genotoxicity
  • Lymphocytes
  • Occupational exposure
  • Sister chromatid exchanges

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Engineering

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