Objective Both exposure to occupational chemicals and to unusual working hours have well documented effects on health. Determination of occupational exposure limits is, however, usually based on chemical-only exposure and assumes an 8-h workday, 5 days/week and a 40-h work week. A significant proportion of the workforce is exposed to chemicals while working in other work schedules. This review thus aimed to synthesize and evaluate the scientific support for a combined effect of unusual working hours and chemical exposure and, if possible, give recommendations for OEL adjustments to account for unusual working hours. Methods The search for articles was made as part of the preparation of a report for the Nordic Expert Group for Criteria Documentation of Health Risks from Chemicals. In this report, unusual working hours were categorized as shift work or extended (>8 h) working hours. Inclusion criteria were observational studies in the English language published up to November 2021 in peer-reviewed journals, with explicit metrics of exposure (chemicals and unusual working hours) and of health outcome, and which explicitly tested the association between exposure and outcome. Search engines of seven databases were used. Results Of the initially 15 400 identified papers, 9 studies published between 1985 and...

Annals of Work Exposures and Health
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