RE: formalin separation from tissues for disposal

From:"Morken, Tim"

I guess the first thing I would ask is: Is the blood and lipid a danger to anyone? Can we assume these substances are "disinfected" by the formalin? If that is not enough, then determine how the formalin disposed of. If it is incinerated, then it would seem that having blood and lipid in it is a moot issue. If that is still not enough, I guess you could filter it and disposed of the filtrate with your other tissues. I wonder, however, it that is even practical since the real concern is not the blood cells, but the serum the cells are in. The serum proteins (including any infectious agents) could not be filtered out in any practical way. Also, that would also necessitate studying the risk of the extra exposure ofpersonnel to formalin it would entail.
Hopefully this gives you some ammunition!
Tim Morken
CDC, Atlanta
-----Original Message-----
From: Vinnie Della Speranza []
Sent: Tuesday, September 10, 2002 9:43 AM
Subject: formalin separation from tissues for disposal

I know that this topic has been discussed on the list numerous times before however we are being faced with a slightly different slant that I would welcome your input on.
Our Safety dept. has become conerned that our waste formalin contains blood and lipid that they feel must be separated from the formalin before it can be carted away.
We currently use a filtering funnel when pouring off the waste formalin but this won't extract the lipid and blood which are in liquid suspension in the formalin.
Has anyone else been required to address this issue? I'm hoping someone can offer a reasonable solution that will satisfy our Safety folks.
Vinnie Della Speranza
Manager for Anatomic Pathology Services
Medical University of South Carolina
165 Ashley Avenue  Suite 309
Charleston, SC 29425
Ph: 843-792-6353
fax: 843-792-8974

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