International Archives of Occupational and Environmental Health

, Volume 67, Issue 2, pp 119–123

External and internal antimony exposure in starter battery production

  • Michael Kentner
  • Markus Leinemann
  • Karl-Heinz Schaller
  • Dieter Weltle
  • Gerhard Lehnert
Short Communication

DOI: 10.1007/BF00572235

Cite this article as:
Kentner, M., Leinemann, M., Schaller, KH. et al. Int. Arch Occup Environ Heath (1995) 67: 119. doi:10.1007/BF00572235

Abstract

In the production of lead batteries two antimony compounds occur: in the casting of grids antimony trioxide (Sb2O3), and in the formation of lead plates stibine (SbH3). Seven workers from the gridcasting area and 14 workers from the formation area were examined with regard to the antimony concentration in blood (Sb-B) and urine (Sb-U). Antimony air concentrations (Sb-A) were measured by means of personal air samplers. Urine samples were collected at the end of the working week, at the beginning (U1) and the end (U2) of the shift, and at the beginning of work following a weekend without Sb exposure (U3). At U2 among the casters the median Sb-A exposure was 4.5 (1.18–6.6) μg Sb/m3 and among the formation workers, 12.4 (0.6–41.5) μg Sb/m3. The exposure in both groups is more than 10 times lower than the present threshold limit values. The median Sb-B concentrations in the preshift samples was 2.6 (0.5–3.4) μg Sb/l for the casters and 10.1 (0.5–17.9) μg Sb/l for the formation workers. The average Sb-U values (U2) were 3.9 (2.8–5.6) μg Sb/g creatinine in the casting area and 15.2 (3.5 23.4) μg Sb/g creatinine in the forming area. Our investigation indicates that the two antimony compounds show virtually equal pulmonary absorption and renal elimination. The statistically significant correlations between Sb-A/Sb-B and Sb-A/Sb-U form the basis for proposals regarding appropriate biological exposure limits for occupational antimony exposure.

Key words

Lead batteryAntimony trioxideStibine Biological exposure limitsBiological monitoring

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1995

Authors and Affiliations

  • Michael Kentner
    • 1
  • Markus Leinemann
    • 1
  • Karl-Heinz Schaller
    • 2
  • Dieter Weltle
    • 2
  • Gerhard Lehnert
    • 2
  1. 1.Institute for Occupational and Social MedicineUniversity of GöttingenGöttingenGermany
  2. 2.Institute and Out-patient Clinic for Occupational, Social and Enviromental MedicineUniversity of Erlangen-NürnbergErlangenGermany