Accidental Exposure to UV Radiation Produced by Germicidal Lamp: Case Report and Risk Assessment


Corresponding author email: (Vincenzo Camisa)


Ultraviolet radiation is known to cause both benefits and harmful effects on humans. The adverse effects mainly involve two target organs, skin and eye, and can be further divided into short- and long-term effects. The present case report describes an accidental exposure of two health-care workers to ultraviolet radiation produced by a germicidal lamp in a hospital pharmacy. The germicidal lamp presented a spectrum with an intense UV-C component as well as a modest UV-B contribution. Overexposure to UV-C radiation was over 100 times as large as the ICNIRP exposure limits. A few hours after the exposure, the two subjects reported symptoms of acute UV injury and both of them continued having significant clinical signs for over 2 years. In this study, we describe acute and potentially irreversible effects caused by high UV exposure. In addition, we present the results of risk assessment by occupational exposure to germicidal lamps.