Re: Interesting point! formalin separation from tissues for disposal

From:Vinnie Della Speranza

You and I are in agreement. I, like you.consider the lipid in the formalin to be a colloid for lack of any better is commonly found floating on the surface of the waste formalin. this is where I'm at now. the Safety people want it (lipid) out but can't offer any advice on how to do just that and of course, I will consider any method that creates additional safety concerns for staff and another full time job to accomplish, undesirable.
re: Carrie's suggestion, neutralization followed by drain disposal would not be acceptable at my facility. in fact, this would probably cause me greater headaches as I would have to prove that no formaldehyde remained in the waste before disposal could occur.
I'm hoping someone will have a reasonable suggestion for what has quickly becoming a crisis as they are not allowing me to do any additional disposal of tissues or waste formalin until a solution is found. we don't have the space to permit this stuff to accumulate.

>>> Gayle Callis <> 09/10/02 11:59AM >>>

Hazel brings up a good point.  Next question, is what do you do with the
separate blood and lipid waste? Has your safety people thought of that?  or
do you have a way to dispose of these in another manner? 

Maybe looking into formalin recycling would be a good choice, since you
have to do so much work to satisfy the safety people.  Then the only waste
you have to dispose of is what is left in bottom of recycling unit, small
by comparison to volumes of formalin.  Personally, I don't think one can
separate lipid out totally, it makes a colloidal solution (hope I am
thinking correctly here) and I am sure everyone has seen cloudy formalin
from very fatty tissue - and if you can't get it all out, what does your
safety people make you do then??

Good luck

At 09:02 AM 9/10/02 -0500, you wrote:
>I don't know if I can offer a reasonable solution, but wouldn't these
>elements be harmless as they are fixed?   I don't understand their reasoning
>for this.   Is the waste company that hauls the spent formalin away
>suggesting this?    We have to pour ours off as well.
>I sure hope this isn't something that will come my way.    I'll be
>interested in replies to this thread.
>> -----Original Message-----
>> From:    Vinnie Della Speranza []
>> Sent:    Tuesday, September 10, 2002 8:43 AM
>> To:
>> 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.
>> thanks
>> 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
Gayle Callis
Research Histopathology Supervisor
Veterinary Molecular Biology - Marsh Lab
Montana State University - Bozeman
19th and Lincoln St
Bozeman MT 59717-3610

406 994-6367 (lab with voice mail)
406 994-4303 (FAX)


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