IJOHNS  Vol.3 No.4 , July 2014
Nasal Response from Formaldehyde Exposure Used as Cadaver Preservative among Pre-Clinical Medical Students in a Nigerian Medical College

Background: Formaldehyde is commonly used for cadaver preservation in most anatomy laboratories with medical students at risk of acute toxic reactions involving the mucosal surface of the upper respiratory tract. Aim: To assess the nasal induced physical reactions from formaldehyde exposure among pre-clinical medical students. Materials and Method: This is a cross sectional, anonymous questionnaire-based study that included 119 preclinical medical students who took human anatomy laboratory course in the year 2012 at the College of Health Science of the Usman Danfodiyo University, Sokoto, Nigeria. Results: One hundred and nineteen students responded to the questionnaires. There were 82 males and 37 females with a ratio of 2.2:1. Fifty nine (49.6%) of the respondents had watery rhinorrhea, nose itching 41 (34.5%), excessive sneezing 34 (28.6%), nasal obstruction 32 (26.9%), hyposmia 23 (19.3%) and 6 (5%) epistaxis. Thirty (29.2%) respondents had persistent nasal symptoms throughout the dissection session and nasal obstruction accounted for 40% of those affected. Majority of the respondents 113 (95%) had no knowledge of health hazards and precautions against formaldehyde exposure. Conclusion: Watery rhinorrhea, followed by nasal obstruction were the most common nasal symptoms which were persistent in 36.7% and 40% of the respondents respectively throughout the anatomy dissection sessions. Ninety five percent of the respondents had no knowledge of health hazards and precautions against formaldehyde exposure, therefore we recommend creation of awareness and precautionary measures against formaldehyde exposure in our Nigerian medical schools.

Cite this paper: Abdullahi, M. , Zagga, A. , Iseh, K. , Amutta, S. and Aliyu, D. (2014) Nasal Response from Formaldehyde Exposure Used as Cadaver Preservative among Pre-Clinical Medical Students in a Nigerian Medical College. International Journal of Otolaryngology and Head & Neck Surgery, 3, 173-178. doi: 10.4236/ijohns.2014.34032.

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