I understand your challenges. Since the anatomists must be very close to the contaminant source - increasing dilution ventilation gets you very little in the way or exposure control. Downdraft does not work well either because the cadaver and the plastic they are wrapped in to retard desiccation, block the downdraft intakes. Flanged, slotted, side-draft exhaust with laminar supply air from above provides the best exposure control. I’ve tried to explain these issues in the following presentation and videos:
Tables have been obtained; I don't know if they are downdraft. There seems to be a reluctance to use any engineering control$ other than the increased room airflow that is mandated by the local department of health.
One of the … issues… is the 'why can't we do this as we did it 20 years ago'.
Exhausting the air to the outside could prevent those outside the lab from being exposed to formaldehyde but unless you locally exhaust the cadaver tables in a particular manner (see: http://www.anatomy.org/sites/default/files/pdfs/AIHCe%202013%20VS%20Plate%20Mortuary%20Table%20Poster%20Final.pdf), those dissecting the cadavers may likely be over exposed to formaldehyde.
Many thanks for the information regarding cadaver labs.
A bit of context: The issue appears to be the idea of converting a classroom into a cadaver lab without exhausting the air from the room directly to the outside of the building.
Part of the on campus dialogue was the claim that the cadavers would not contain formaldehyde. The person making this claim produced a SDS that shows that the embalming fluid contains '1 to 100 % methanol, 1 to 100% phenol, and greater than 1 % formaldehyde'.
Professor of Chemistry
Oklahoma City University
Previous post | Top of Page | Next post