Dental industry workers at risk of asbestos exposure, study finds

20 Apr 2017 by Sarah Mahan under Research/Treatment

Dental crown 29 PFM on Die1 100x100 Dental industry workers at risk of asbestos exposure, study findsSeveral occupations are known for a high risk of asbestos exposure — pipefitters, mechanics, shipyard works and demolition crews just to name a few. A new study shows the potential risk dental industry workers have for developing malignant mesothelioma, though their profession is not usually associated with .

The Italian study highlights, according to Surviving Mesothelioma, four dental lab technicians and one spouse that contracted pleural mesothelioma due to the used in making dental prostheses. Previously, only one case of mesothelioma due to asbestos exposure in the dental industry had ever been reported in the country.

was once prominently used in manufacturing and construction due to its flexibility and heat resistance. In dentistry, it was used as a binder in periodontal dressings and as a lining material for casting rings and crucibles. It is now a known human carcinogen and banned in more than 50 countries around the world. However, is still commonly used in some processes and materials — or people were unfortunately exposed while it was still in common usage. Many -related diseases, like mesothelioma, have a long latency period and are diagnosed decades after exposure. Of the four cases in the study, three men had been working as dental laboratory technicians, with exposure for 10, 34, and 4 years, and one wife had been helping her husband manufacture dental prostheses for 30 years.

“We confirm the association of malignant mesothelioma with dental technician work,” the study concludes. “Dental technicians suffering from mesothelioma should be questioned about past occupational exposure.”


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