This world map was drawn by Flemish cartographer Abraham Ortelius in 1570. Today,
satellites give us essentially
complete knowledge of the earth’s surface so that we can zoom-in to see our
houses. In 1570, a map of the world was needed even though information was
limited. Today, we can map the knowledge domain of occupational toxicology
realizing that knowledge is incomplete and accuracy will increase as we learn
These statistics are from Cancer Atlas, 2006 published by the American Cancer Society, based on data
from IARC, the International Agency for Research on Cancer.
3. About the Moral of the Story
The goal of preventing
occupational diseases is attained by searching for scientific truth not by understating or
overstating the risks. As stated by Goodman
and Samet, "The notion of "causation" requires that the
cause somehow actively "produce" its effect, which is captured
operationally by the requirement that active manipulation of the cause
should produce a change in the probability of the outcome." Knowing
that cigarette smoking is the major cause of lung cancer and COPD means that
we can now prevent the majority of cases of these diseases. The scientific
method depends upon iteration "in which repetition of a sequence of
operations yields results successively closer to a desired result." The
desired result is the preventable cause of the occupational disease.
4. About Haz-Map Features of Which Users May Not Be Aware
a. You can search in Haz-Map by CAS number. Just type it in
the search box at http://hazmap.nlm.nih.gov/
and click the Agent icon.
b. In the same seach box, type "class" and click
the Agent icon. This will return all the Classes of chemicals in Haz-Map,
for example, ACID ANHYDRIDES. All chemical classes are in ALL CAPS.
c. You can search for Haz-Map chemicals from ChemIDplus. Go
and search for the chemical. If the chemical is in Haz-Map, then "Haz-Map"
will appear in the list under the heading "File Locator."
d. Vapor pressure (VP) is a very important number in
exposure assessment. The VPs in Haz-Map are room temperature (20-25 deg C)
values. If you multiply the VP in mmHg times 1300, it will give you the saturated
concentration in ppm. (The magic number is 1300 because 760 X 1300 = 1
million. If a chemical has a VP of 760 mmHg (1 atmosphere), then it
has the potential to reach a concentration of 1 million parts per million
in an enclosed space at room temperature. See Sullivan,
p. 34.) ACGIH and AIHA are now publishing some chemical profiles that show
values for saturated concentrations.
e. Just like shopping in a supermarket, being familiar with
categories will help you to browse and find a specific item. The most
important categories are:
Major Agent Categories at http://hazmap.nlm.nih.gov/cgi-bin/hazmap_cgi?level=0&tree=Agent
There are also subcategories of the major
agent categories. Just click the major category to see the
Process Categories at http://hazmap.nlm.nih.gov/cgi-bin/hazmap_custcgi?level=0&tree=Process
Disease Categories at http://hazmap.nlm.nih.gov/cgi-bin/hazmap_cgi?level=0&tree=Disease
Job Task Categories at http://hazmap.nlm.nih.gov/cgi-bin/hazmap_custcgi?level=0&tree=JobTask
5. About Making a Webinar Presentation
Check your phone with the equipment that will be used during
your presentation. Have a backup phone ready. I called in using
the Skype computer phone system. I had no problem talking with the moderator,
but when the webinar started, all of my speech was echoed. The participants
did not hear the echo, just me. It was very difficult to continue the
presentation. I moved the earphones slightly away from my ears so the echo
wasn't so loud. I interrupted the meeting twice to ask for assistance, but
nothing could be done. I was able to finish the one hour presentation, but my
concentration was broken by the constant echoing in the background.