Spirometry (pulmonary function testing) is used within occupational, or workplace health, and respiratory clinics to assess and monitor an individual’s general respiratory health and capability.

Individual risk factors within your business as prolonged exposure to inhaled substances can cause Occupational Asthma and respiratory problems which can lead to the requirement for lung function tests (spirometry pulmonary function testing).

Lung function tests a base-line is undertaken and the frequency of further lung function tests are judged on the level of exposure. These lung function tests are usually conducted more frequently in the first two years of employment, when reaction and damage can surface.

Substances responsible for most causes of occupational asthma that may require lung function tests are:-

  • Isocyanides – vehicle spray painting, foam manufacturing

  • Flour/grain/hay – handling grain at docks, milling, malting, baking

  • Glutaraldehyde – disinfecting instrumenWood dusts – sawmilling, woodworking

  • Electronic soldering flux – soldering, electronic assembly

  • Latex – protective gloves for health care, motor vehicle repair, beauticians etc.

  • Laboratory animals –laboratory animal work

  • Some glues/ resins – curing of epoxy resins

  • Respiratory sensitizers are subject to the Control of Substances Hazardous to Health Regulations (COSHH)

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