Reproductive disorders caused by occupational exposure for male welders
The welders are exposed to many chemicals , strong physical constraints and nanoparticles. A lot of epidemiological studies have shown reproductive disorders among welders.
Possible role of exposure to heat on reproduction
Possible role of boron exposure on reproduction
Possible role of cadmium exposure on reproduction
Possible role of chromium exposure on reproduction
Possible role of nickel and manganese exposure on reproduction
Generally, the studies speak about the welding but give no details about the welding technique . However, there are two different welding techniques :
- brazing : the filler metal and the base metal are different,
- TIG, MIG weldings : the base metal and the welding cord are the same however the température is more higher than for brazing eand workers are exposed to metal fumes.
The welders are subjected to multiple exposure, depending on the welding technique.
The heat is the main cause of reproductive disorders amog welders ( found in the scientific literature).
It is not the ambient temperature which is in issue but the temperature which results from infrared radiation around the testicles.
Oligospermia is often found in the welders.
Since 1972, this effect was seen in the rat
Boron is classified as probably reprotoxic in Europe, since 2008.
At high levels, boron causes testicular atrophy.
Since 2011, Europe has forbidden cadmium in the welding cords.
The scientific literature demonstrates that cadmium is reprotoxic : it decreases hormone production and movements of spermatozoids.
Chromium is present in stainless steels (stainless still is composed of iron and carbon, however to be stainlees, it must contain at least 10% chromimum)
Stainless stills are welded with TIG technique.
Chromium is reprotoxic through various méchanisms :
- decreases testosterone secretion,
- disturbs the movements of spermatozoids,
- decreases the concentration of spermatozoids,
- oxidative stress.
Nickel and manganèse are known to cause reproductive disorders among welders.