Review of hazards to female reproductive health in veterinary practice
Sheftel, J. M. et al. (2017) Review of hazards to female reproductive health in veterinary practice. Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association, 250(8), pp. 862-872
This literature review discusses the occupational hazards women face in veterinary practices on a daily basis – hazards that include risks to their reproductive health, including fertility, and to an embryo or foetus during pregnancy.
The review categorises the hazards as:
- Chemical hazards – including exposure to antineoplastic drugs, hormones and anaesthetic gases
- Biological hazards – including zoonotic bacterial, viral pathogens and other infectious agents
- Physical hazards – including needle-stick injuries, radiation exposure, physically demanding work, and long working hours
There is a guidance table for each class of hazard identifying the specific hazard and the reproductive risks. For each hazard, examples of best practice to prevent, or mitigate, the risk found within the literature are given.
There is substantial body of knowledge about the hazards to reproductive health faced by female veterinary surgeons, vet nurses and care assistants. This review and the best practices identified would be useful to practices when developing protocols in this area.
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