´In the field´ application of the measurement of urinary excretion of unmodified solvent for the biological monitoring of exposed workers has been investigated in many recent papers. The results obtained for several solvents are reviewed. The values of correlation coefficients (r) and regression lines obtained for benzene, toluene, xylene, styrene, n-hexane, cyclohexane, 2- and 3-methylpentane, methyl chloride, tetrachloroethylene, carbon tetrachloride, methyl chloroform, p-dichlorobenzene, nitrous oxide, halothane, isoflurane, enflurane, acetone, methyl ethyl ketone and methyl isobutyl ketone are presented. The correlations observed were generally good: r values range from 0.50-0.97, and the majority are between 0.84 and 0.90. The regression lines reported far the same solvent in different studies present some variability: this is possibly due to an inadequate control of factors influencing the relationship between external dose and absorption, such as differences in body burden, work load, individual characteristics, etc. These factors are discussed. As a whole, results reported in the literature show that measuring of urinary excretion of unmodified solvents provides a highly sensitive and specific exposure index, and can also be applied for the biological monitoring of occupational exposure to low levels of solvents or to solvent mixtures. Nevertheless, for an adequate assessment of biological limit values, further studies evaluating the reproducibility of regression lines are needed, given that the aspects influencing the correlation between external dose and urinary excretion are fully controlled. Another crucial aspect is the correlation with early effects: even though this has yet to be evaluated for several solvents, for others such as styrene and perchloroethylene a good correlation was obtained, further supporting the usefulness of the measurement of urinary excretion of solvent for the biological monitoring of occupational exposure.
The urinary excretion of solvents and gases for the biological monitoring of occupational exposure: A review / Gobba, Fabriziomaria; S., Ghittori; M., Imbriani; L., Maestri; E., Capodaglio; A., Cavalleri. - In: SCIENCE OF THE TOTAL ENVIRONMENT. - ISSN 0048-9697. - STAMPA. - 199:(1997), pp. 3-12.