Thursday, February 16, 2017

Scientific Opinion assessing health risks associated with UV-C radiation from lamps concludes that further research is needed

Scientific Opinion assessing health risks associated with UV-C radiation from lamps concludes that further research is needed
Today the SCHEER (1) confirms that exposure to UV-C lamps can cause skin and eye problems, but that more data is needed on long-term exposure to establish whether it can cause cancer.
The final Opinion on the "biological effects of UV-C radiation relevant to health with particular reference to UV-C lamps" focuses on the assessment of risks associated with UV-C radiation from lamps. Some key conclusions are:
  • There are few studies of exposure to humans under normal conditions of use and insufficient data on long-term exposure to UV radiation from UV-C lamps (2). More data is needed on both the general population and workers' exposure.
     
  • Accidental acute exposure to high levels of UV radiation from UV-C lamps has been reported to cause eye and skin problems in humans. However, there is not enough data to establish above which exposure-level this type of damage can be caused.
     
  • As DNA damage caused by UV-C radiation is similar to that of UV-B radiation, it is considered to be carcinogenic to humans. However, there is not enough data to establish whether this is the case for exposure to UV-C lamps per se.
See the full Opinion for all conclusions