Peter Paszkiewicz, Karl Buchwald, Institut for Occupational Safety and Health of the German Social Accindent Insurance (IFA), Germany
European statistics report 5,778 cases of occupational contact dermatitis within the EU in 2005 . These work-related dermatosis, in particular hand dermatitis, are among the most prevalent occupational diseases. Due to the lack of scientific methods to measure the level of the body’s exposures to dangerous substances via dermal contact, no dermal exposure limit values are set. This increases the importance of recognising risk factors and developing methods of assessing and controlling them. This article will deal with the risk of dermal exposure to hazardous substances. Depending on the nature of the substance and the working conditions the quantification of the extent of exposure and their potential reduction by protective measures will be described.