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RR79 - An assessment of skin sensitisation by the use of epoxy resin in the construction industry

Aimed to carry out a literature and industrial survey and to review information available on skin sensitisation due to the use of epoxies, particularly in the construction industry. Literature and industrial surveys were conducted to identify the most relevant in formation on epoxy resin sensitisation. Up to 53 relevant publications were reviewed, including the basic chemistry of epoxy resins and skin sensitisation due to various constituents of epoxy formulations. The skin sensitisation to epoxies in the construction industry was also reviewed. The most effective methods of reducing or preventing sensitisation were also described. The industrial survey included contact with construction companies and other organisations. As a result of the literature review, the main constituents in epoxy resin systems responsible for skin sensitisation were identified. It was shown that the reactive constituents of base resin, curing agents, diluents etc. are responsible for skin sensitisation to epoxy resins used in the construction industry, either singly or in combination. Recommends a number of protective measures including the use of effective protective clothing, alternative materials, mixing and dispensing procedures and safe handling of epoxy resins.

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Updated 2010-03-19