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Master Thesis

Risques toxicologiques « métaux » et « hydrocarbures aromatiques polycycliques » en métallurgie et recommandations de surveillance biologique de l’exposition pour le médecin du travail

Abstract : Introduction: Metallurgy workers are exposed to metallic dust and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) during the various steelmaking and refining processes. These exposures can be at the origin of many pathologies (respiratory, dermatological, renal or neurological, cancers). The objective of this work was to characterize the current occupational exposures to metals and PAHs in various French metallurgical factories and to develop prevention and supervision recommendations for workers. Material and method : Biological exposure monitoring was carried out in 651 subjects from 5 metallurgical plants during several campaigns between 2012 and 2020, with collection of urine samples at the end of week and metal analysis (inorganic As, Cd, Cr , Co, Mn, Mo, Ni, Ti, V) and PAH metabolites (1-hydroxypyrene, 3-hydroxybenzo (a) pyrene). Professional activities, protective equipment and process information were collected using an individual questionnaire. A coding was created in order to categorize the subjects into sectors of activity, workstations and professional activities to creat similarly exposed groups. The analyses were carried out by ICP-MS for the metals and by HPLC-Fluorimetry for the metabolites of PAHs.Results / Discussion: 1082 urine samples collected in eight years. Three main sectors were defined, respectively the production / refining of metal alloys, mechanical treatment and heat treatment of alloys. The urinary concentrations of metals and PAH metabolites were, for the most part, well below the Biological Limit Values (BVL) or the Thresholds recommended in the workplace, but exceeded the levels measured in the general population, confirming occupational exposure. The most significant exposures concerned only metals and were observed during the production / refining of steels, in particular in roasting / calcination furnaces and Electric Dairy Furnaces, concerning Chromium (Cr), Cobalt (Co) and Cadmium (CD). Some high values are also observed during activities generating aerosols (welding, grinding, sanding). Due to very different elimination kinetics, these results reflect recent exposures to Cr / Co / Ni, but more a chronic accumulation of Cd. The determinants of exposure identified were smoking (PAH and Cd), working activites and processes generating aerosols, the composition of raw materials.Conclusion: Our results showed current low occupational exposures to metals and PAHs in most of the processes studied. Biological monitoring of exposure appears to be a simple and effective risk assessment tool. The preferred urinary biomarkers are inorganic arsenic, Cd, Co, Ni for metals and 1-OHP (+/-) 3-OHBaP for PAHs. Ti and Mo are of little use due to important impregnations in the general population. Intra-erythrocyte Cr seems useful in assessing exposure to hexavalent Cr but has not yet been validated.
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Master Thesis
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Submitted on : Thursday, October 15, 2020 - 2:23:07 PM
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Léa Pautasso. Risques toxicologiques « métaux » et « hydrocarbures aromatiques polycycliques » en métallurgie et recommandations de surveillance biologique de l’exposition pour le médecin du travail. Médecine humaine et pathologie. 2020. ⟨dumas-02968139⟩

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