Comparison of ISO work of breathing and NIOSH breathing resistance measurements for air-purifying respirators
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Comparison of ISO work of breathing and NIOSH breathing resistance measurements for air-purifying respirators

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English

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  • Alternative Title:
    J Occup Environ Hyg
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  • Description:
    The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health's methods and requirements for air-purifying respirator breathing resistance in 42 CFR Part 84 do not include work of breathing. The International Organization for Standardization Technical Committee 94, Subcommittee 15 utilized work of breathing to evaluate airflow resistance for all classes of respiratory protective devices as part of their development of performance standards regarding respiratory protective devices. The objectives of this study were: (1) to evaluate the relationship between the International Organization for Standardization's work of breathing measurements and the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health's breathing resistance test results; (2) to provide scientific bases for standard development organizations to decide if work of breathing should be adopted; and (3) to establish regression equations for manufacturers and test laboratories to estimate work of breathing measurements using breathing resistance data. A total of 43 respirators were tested for work of breathing at minute ventilation rates of 10, 35, 65, 105, and 135 liters per minute. Breathing resistance obtained at a constant flow rate of 85 liters per minute per National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health protocol was correlated to each of the parameters (total work of breathing, inhalation, and exhalation) obtained from the work of breathing tests. The ratio of work of breathing exhalation to work of breathing inhalation for all air-purifying respirators is similar to the ratio of exhalation to inhalation resistance when tested individually. The ratios were about 0.8 for filtering facepiece respirators, 0.5 for half-masks, and 0.25 for full-facepiece respirators. The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health's breathing resistance is close to work of breathing's minute ventilation of 35 liters per minute, which represents the common walking/working pace in most workplaces. The work of breathing and the National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health's breathing resistance were found to be strongly and positively correlated (r values of 0.7-0.9) at each work rate for inhalation and exhalation. In addition, linear and multiple regression models (R-squared values of 0.5-0.8) were also established to estimate work of breathing using breathing resistance. Work of breathing was correlated higher to breathing resistance for full-facepiece and half-mask elastomeric respirators than filtering facepiece respirators for inhalation. For exhalation, filtering facepiece respirators were correlated much better than full-facepiece and half-mask elastomeric respirators. Therefore, the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health's breathing resistance may reasonably be used to predict work of breathing for air-purifying respirators. The results could also be used by manufacturers for product development and evaluation.
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  • Pubmed ID:
    34170797
  • Pubmed Central ID:
    PMC8355199
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