Posted by: vet assistant | 2010-03-24


here is a question about halothane i work in a clinic as a vet assistant ,i work daily with halothane and i want to find out the effects of accidental inhalation of halothane in the long term also the affect on a pregnant women and her baby. i cant seem to find any info.if your not sure can you direct me to whom i should post this question. thank you

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Our expert says:
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Dear Vet Assistant

You should get lots of info from a health and safety company.

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Our users say:
Posted by: Researcher | 2010-03-26

Dear Vet assistant

I was in a similar position as you are in. Occupational inhalation of halothane is very dangerous for woman who are planning to fall pregnant or who are pregnant in their first trimester. The incidence of misciarriage is increased by sixfold, as well as haemorrhage during the pregnancy. If your system has a scavenger with proper ventilation in the theatre, then you should be ok, but just remember that the effects last for 12 months after exposure. You can have an audit done to measure the exposure levels in you theatre, to be certain. Otherwise a respirator specifically for halogenated gases will increase your safety.

While I was working with halothane (no scavenger or ventilation) I had 2 miscarriages, luckily both followed by successfull pregnancies, although with bleeding throughout. I stopped working with halothane about 2 years ago, am now pregnant for the third time, had no miscarriage inbetween and also no bleeding at all. So, its not to say that it was the halothane, but there is plenty of articles on Occupational exposure which sketch my scenario pretty accurately.

Hope this helps.

Reply to Researcher
Posted by: Chill | 2010-03-24

I''m not sure why you can''t find any info - if you google Halothane in (not!) you get over 650 000 hits.

There''s an article in Wikipedia, and if you go to www followed by you will find the official FDA information, including a warning on the use of halothane in pregnancy. One assumes that this would refer to the use of the anaesthetic on a pregnant patient, and not necessarily incidental inhalation - but nevertheless, I would judge that your concerns are valid and should be discussed with a doctor or gynae.

Reply to Chill

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