Combined Exposure of Methylene Chloride and Carbon Monoxide in Smoking and Nonsmoking Paint Strippers.
AIR FORCE INST OF TECH WRIGHT-PATTERSON AFB OH
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Carboxyhemoglobin COHb is formed when carbon monoxide CO combines reversibly with the oxygen carrying sites on the hemoglobin molecule. COHb levels above 5 increase the risk of angina pectoris and coronary infarctions by decreasing the oxygen supply in the blood and also in the myoglobin of the heart muscle. Cigarette smoke contains 4 carbon monoxide and a one-pack-per-day smoker exhibits COHb levels of about 5.9 12. Methylene chloride exposure also results in increased COHb levels 2, 3. Therefore, the combined effect of smoking and methylene chloride exposure may increase the risk of disease to dangerous levels. This thesis tests the null hypothesis that smokers do not have statistically significant differences in COHb levels following days of exposure to methylene chloride when compared to days of nonexposure.