It is unknown if individual petroleum products may cause cancer in humans. However, there is evidence that those who work in the petroleum refining business are more likely to get skin cancer and leukemia. 6. A spill in a house or business may have an impact on the health of the individuals who live and work there. Spills can lead to allergic reactions in people with asthma or other respiratory conditions. They also can cause irritation and nausea for those who must come into contact with them.
Petroleum products are used in many everyday products: from cosmetics to cleaning products, candles to paint, varnishes to wood stain. When these products break down under heat or light, they can release substances into the air that are harmful to human health. For example, when gasoline breaks down it produces molecules called hydrocarbons, which are known to be toxic. Other chemicals found in petroleum products include benzene, toluene, xylene, and ethylbenzene.
People who work with petroleum products may be exposed to harmful substances through their skin, lungs, and eyes. The most serious exposure occurs when people go inside buildings where there has been a petroleum spill - either because water was spilled onto the ground or because the fuel leaked out of a vehicle's tank. Here, they would be exposed to the same hazardous materials that caused the spill in the first place.
The majority of the studies done on the link between oil spills and cancer have looked at workers involved in cleanup operations.
Extremely high levels of exposure can result in unconsciousness and death. Some liquid petroleum products can irritate the skin and some can be absorbed through the skin if they come into touch with it. Chronic exposure to petroleum products may have an adverse effect on the neurological system, blood, and kidneys. Small levels of benzene, a recognized human carcinogen, are found in gasoline.
Although laboratory studies cannot always predict whether a chemical will cause cancer in humans, nearly all known human carcinogens that have been fully investigated also cause cancer in lab animals. Carcinogens are frequently discovered to cause cancer in lab animals before being shown to cause cancer in humans.
The amount, length, frequency, and timing of exposure to these substances determines a person's chance of acquiring cancer. It is vital to know when you are exposed since a slight exposure in the womb, for example, may be more dangerous than a small exposure as an adult.
People who work in particular occupations, such as painting, building, pesticide, and petroleum, are at a higher risk of developing cancer. Many studies have found that occupational exposure to asbestos, benzene, benzidine, cadmium, nickel, arsenic, radon, and vinyl chloride can cause cancer. The link between exposure to certain chemicals and cancer has been known for many years; what is less clear is how these chemicals actually cause cancer.
Cancer is caused by changes occurring in DNA of cells. These changes may be due to radiation from chemical toxins or physical forces like heat or pressure. Other factors can also increase a person's risk of developing cancer. These include age, family history, ethnicity, gender, and lifestyle choices like smoking, drinking alcohol, or using drugs.
The most common types of cancer are carcinomas which develop when cells divide without control of genetic material or apoptosis. Cells that do not die but instead continue to divide under the influence of growth factors or mutated genes form a tumor. Tumors can be located either inside or outside the body. Internal tumors are called neoplasms. They can be benign (not cancerous) or malignant (cancerous). The term mass refers to any large collection of cells that is visible to the eye. Tumors can be either benign or malignant.