[Histonet] FW: Recycling formalin

Morken, Timothy Timothy.Morken at ucsf.edu
Wed Dec 20 13:15:56 CST 2017

Martha, The question to ask your EHS is how much extra exposure they will allow employees. Recycling removes all the salts so you need to add them back. Then it is just like making up formalin from scratch. Does anyone do that anymore? You need a minimum of full-face vapor masks to prevent vapor exposure. And risk of spill is high. Our EH&S  decided it was not worth the risk. 

Filtering is another option, but, again, you are handling large amounts of formalin so risk high exposure and possible spills. We tried it and it was too labor intensive, the filter was constantly clogging and we had to keep large carboys around that seem to just leak due to the poor quality of the spigots. Again, we abandoned  it. 

The other questions are, who is going to do this (s EHS volunteering their staff?!?!)? Is there space to do it (waste carboys, plus filled carboys, plus transporting)? I can bet your lab does not have space or personnel for this procedure. Does EHS? 

Tim Morken
Pathology Site Manager, Parnassus
Supervisor, Electron Microscopy/Neuromuscular Special Studies Department of Pathology UC San Francisco Medical Center

-----Original Message-----
From: Martha Ward-Pathology via Histonet [mailto:histonet at lists.utsouthwestern.edu] 
Sent: Wednesday, December 20, 2017 11:00 AM
To: histonet at lists.utsouthwestern.edu
Cc: histonet at lists2.utsouthwestern.edu
Subject: [Histonet] Recycling formalin

I am posting this for our Histology lab manager:

Is anyone recycling formalin and if so, exactly what are you using the recycled formalin for?    Putting it on processors, adding to specimens, etc?    Apparently our EHS department is pushing this.

Also thank everyone for their help with our questions about unstained slides for prostate biopsies.    It was very helpful.

Thanks in advance for your help with our recycled formalin question.

Martha Ward
Wake Forest Baptist Health
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