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Could Your Respiratory Ailments be the Result of the Air You Breathe at Work?

Cinnaminson, NJ – WEBWIRE

Last month, NBC published a report about workers from an Alabama manufacturing plant that suffer from respiratory conditions ranging from asthma to bronchitis.  According to the article, the plant makes foam cushions for a large foreign car manufacturer and workers believe exposure to isocyanates could be the culprit for their conditions.

Toluene diisocyanate (TDI), a type of isocyanate, along with methylene diphenyl diisocyanate (MDI) are reportedly used at the plant.  According to the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH), “Isocyanates are powerful irritants to the mucous membranes of the eyes and gastrointestinal and respiratory tracts. Direct skin contact can also cause marked inflammation. Isocyanates can also sensitize workers, making them subject to severe asthma attacks if they are exposed again. There is evidence that both respiratory and dermal exposures can lead to sensitization. Death from severe asthma in some sensitized subjects has been reported. Workers potentially exposed to isocyanates may experience persistent or recurring eye irritation, nasal congestion, dry or sore throat, cold-like symptoms, cough, shortness of breath, wheezing, or chest tightness should see a physician knowledgeable in work-related health problems.”

In California, toluene diisocyanate was added to California’s Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment’s (OEHHA) list of chemicals known to cause cancer or reproductive toxicity for purposes of Proposition 65 in 1989.

“Preventing exposure to hazardous materials in the workplace is an essential step in protecting workers’ health,” said Joseph Frasca, Senior Vice President of Marketing at EMSL Analytical, Inc.  “At EMSL, we offer air testing analyses to identify a number of airborne materials, including chemical and biological pollutants that could cause a wide range of respiratory ailments including asthma, allergies and cancer.”

To learn more about testing services for indoor pollutants and asthma triggers in the workplace, please visit, call (800) 220-3675 or email .

About EMSL Analytical, Inc.
EMSL Analytical is a nationally recognized and locally focused provider of industrial hygiene, environmental, indoor air quality, consumer product and materials testing services and products for professionals and the general public.  The company has an extensive list of accreditations from leading organizations as well as state and federal regulating bodies.

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 Toluene diisocyanate
 chemical testing
 indoor pollutants
 asthma in the workplace

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