Understanding dermal exposure
One major research theme for IOM is dermal exposure which included a programme of research undertaken for the oil industry to investigate skin exposure to heavy fuel oils and to understand whether there are health risks for those workers handling this substance. The research included the development of a methodology to measure dermal exposure to heavy fuel oil levels.
Within the programme, IOM also developed a wet-work sampler allowing investigations into the correlation between the amount of times hands were wet and the subsequent onset of dermatitis in occupations such as hairdressing. The outcome offered better identification of dermatitis risks and improved employee work environments.
These and other studies conducted by IOM have contributed significantly towards the prevention of skin effects and helped the safe use of chemicals in the workplace and by consumers.