[Histonet] Tossing old tissues...

Jennifer MacDonald JMacDonald <@t> mtsac.edu
Tue Sep 11 10:05:32 CDT 2012

At my previous place of employment we used to separate the tissue from the 
formalin.  The STEL exceeded the PEL so we had to wear respirators.  The 
problem was that anyone entering the room was exposed.  Based on this we 
were able to justify having a outside company dispose of the waste.  The 
company brought barrels and they put the containers (tissue and formalin) 
in them with packing materials.  The barrels were taken off site and 

Tom McNemar <TMcNemar <@t> lmhealth.org> 
Sent by: histonet-bounces <@t> lists.utsouthwestern.edu
09/11/2012 07:05 AM

"histonet <@t> lists.utsouthwestern.edu" <histonet <@t> lists.utsouthwestern.edu>

[Histonet] Tossing old tissues...

Hello all,

A question came up during our last JCAHO inspection regarding the dumping 
of old tissues.  Do you just throw out the intact specimen containers with 
formalin and all into biohazard trash?  Do you drain/collect the formalin 
for other disposal and just place the drained tissues into the biohazard 
trash?  If you drain/collect, do you wear a respirator while doing it?

We have always drained and only thrown the tissues into the bio trash and 
have not used a respirator.  We monitor regularly and always make certain 
to include this task (along with the making of formalin) when monitoring 
for exposure and are always way below the acceptable limits.  I don't 
think we have ever done and STEL just for the dumping of tissues though.

Just wondered what everyone else did.  I would like to stop draining and 
just dispose of container and all but we pay by the pound for disposal.


Tom McNemar, HT(ASCP)
Histology Co-ordinator
Licking Memorial Health Systems
(740) 348-4163
(740) 348-4166
tmcnemar <@t> lmhealth.org<mailto:tmcnemar <@t> lmhealth.org>

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