Chloracne associated with employment in the production of pentachlorophenol

Michael A. O'Malley, Arvind V. Carpenter, Marie Haring Sweeney, Marilyn A. Fingerhut, David A. Marlow, William Halperin, C. G. Mathias

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To evaluate the association between exposure to pentachlorophenol (PCP) and the occurrence of chloracne, we studied the medical and personnel records for individuals employed in the manufacturing of PCP. Forty‐seven cases of chloracne were identified among 648 workers (7.0%) assigned to PCP production at a single plant between 1953 and 1978. The annual incidence rate varied considerably, ranging from 0 (in 1953) to 1.46 (in 1978). No linear trend in the risk of chloracne was observed with the duration of employment in the pentachlorophenol department. Workers with a documented episode of direct skin contact with PCP had a significantly increased risk of chloracne compared with workers who did not have a documented episode of direct skin contact (cumulative incidence ratio = 4.6; 95% confidence interval 2.6–8.1). Our results confirm that chloracne is associated with exposure to PCP contaminated with hexachlorinated, heptachlorinated, and octachlorinated dibenzo‐p‐dioxins and dibenzofurans.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)411-421
Number of pages11
JournalAmerican journal of industrial medicine
Issue number4
StatePublished - Jan 1 1990
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health

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    O'Malley, M. A., Carpenter, A. V., Sweeney, M. H., Fingerhut, M. A., Marlow, D. A., Halperin, W., & Mathias, C. G. (1990). Chloracne associated with employment in the production of pentachlorophenol. American journal of industrial medicine, 17(4), 411-421.