A 34-year-old male laboratory worker suffered from asthenospermia and fertility problems. He was suspected of having been exposed to solvents used at work due to a malfunction of the ventilation system in his laboratory from August 1996 to April 1997. A laboratory walk-through and air and bulk sample collection were performed to determine the possible exposure levels of chemical hazards in his job. The scenario was reconstructed to simulate the worker's previous exposure during the ventilation shutdown period. It was found that the worker was possibly exposed to chloroform at levels of 10 or 50 times higher than the permissible exposure limit or the threshold limit value of 2 hr/day, 5.5 days/week, and 4.25 weeks/month for 8 months. Because chloroform is known to be spermatotoxic, the possibility of chloroform causing the worker's asthenospermia cannot be ruled out. Further study on spermatotoxicity of chloroform is warranted.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
- Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis