Original article

Scand J Work Environ Health 1985;11(5):365-369    pdf

doi:10.5271/sjweh.2211

Exposure to cutting oils and its relation to skin tumors and premalignant skin lesions on the hands and forearms.

by Jarvholm B, Fast K, Lavenius B, Tomsic P

In a cohort study the incidence of skin tumors on the hands and forearms of 682 turners exposed to cutting oils was compared to the incidence of the general male population and of office workers. Among the 682 turners, five premalignant squamous cell tumors and eight keratoacanthomas were found between 1960 and 1980. Five of this total of 13 turners with primary skin tumors had another skin tumor as well. Among the 682 men there were four cases of scrotal cancer. Among the 375 office workers examined, no malignant or premalignant tumors or keratoacanthomas were found on the hands or forearms. No primary skin tumors were found among the turners after 1975, when the acid-refined mineral oils were replaced by solvent-refined oils containing a far lower concentration of polyaromatic hydrocarbons, which are probably the cancerogenic agent in the oils. The study shows a greatly increased risk of skin tumors on the hands and forearms of workers exposed to acid-refined mineral oils. Individual susceptibility also seems to be indicated.