Environmental exposure to formaldehyde and effects on human health
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1st Military Clinical Hospital, Lublin, Poland
John Paul II Specjalist Hospital, Kraków, Poland
5th Military Hospital with Polyclinic, Kraków, Poland
Corresponding author
Wojciech Mazurkiewicz   

1 Wojskowy Szpital Kliniczny z Polikliniką SPZOZ w Lublinie, al. Racławickie 23, 20-049, Lublin, Polska
Med Srod. 2024;27(2):41-45
Introduction and objective:
Formaldehyde is a common toxic substance in the environment, formed both naturally and as a result of human activity. Due to its widespread use, it can pose a threat to a significant portion of the population. The aim of this study was to analyze scientific research on environmental exposure to formaldehyde and its effects on human health.

Abbreviated description of the state of knowledge:
The concentration of formaldehyde in indoor air of buildings reaches much higher values than in the open air. It most often enters the human body through the respiratory tract, less often through the skin. Formaldehyde can be one of the causes of sick building syndrome or non-specific building-related health symptoms. Occupational exposure to formaldehyde most often affects workers in the health care, factory, construction and garment industries. The results of the study analysis suggest that formaldehyde exposure may be associated with a higher risk of cancer, especially nasopharyngeal cavity cancer and leukemia. Formaldehyde exposure can also cause the development of asthma in both children and adults, as well as some brain diseases.

Many workers, by virtue of their occupation, are exposed to concentrations of formaldehyde that exceed permissible levels. This can become the cause of the development of many diseases. Adequate education of workers, provision of protective measures, and exposure prevention systems can reduce the risk of adverse health effects.

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