Anatomic Pathology Labs Adopt New Ways to Package, Transport, and Store Specimens to Reduce Formalin and Improve Staff Safety in Operating Theaters and Histology Laboratories

Seeking ways to improve efficiency and cut costs, labs aim to use less formalin

One seldom-reported development in anatomic pathology is the new priority histology laboratories are giving to employee safety. Labs have long recognized that exposure to the dangerous chemicals used in processing tissue creates risk for histotechnologists.

Today, a rising number of medical laboratories in the United States and other countries are seeking to reduce those risks. Routine chemicals still used today in histology include formalin, toluene, and xylene.

National Cancer Institute Report Lists Formaldehyde as a Carcinogen

In August, a scientific body confirmed the risk of using formaldehyde in the workplace. The National Research Council of the National Academy of Sciences issued a report confirming findings in the 2011 National Toxicology Program (NTP) that listed formaldehyde as a carcinogen. (more…)