Measuring Personal Exposure to Organophosphate Flame Retardants Using Silicone Wristbands and Hand Wipes

Environ Sci Technol. 2016 Apr 19;50(8):4483-91. doi: 10.1021/acs.est.6b00030. Epub 2016 Mar 31.


Organophosphate flame retardants (PFRs) are widely used as replacements for polybrominated diphenyl ethers in consumer products. With high detection in indoor environments and increasing toxicological evidence suggesting a potential for adverse health effects, there is a growing need for reliable exposure metrics to examine individual exposures to PFRs. Silicone wristbands have been used as passive air samplers for quantifying exposure in the general population and occupational exposure to polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons. Here we investigated the utility of silicone wristbands in measuring exposure and internal dose of PFRs through measurement of urinary metabolite concentrations. Wristbands were also compared to hand wipes as metrics of exposure. Participants wore wristbands for 5 consecutive days and collected first morning void urine samples on 3 alternating days. Urine samples were pooled across 3 days and analyzed for metabolites of the following PFRs: tris(1,3-dichloroisopropyl) phosphate (TDCIPP), tris(1-chloro-2-isopropyl) phosphate (TCIPP), triphenyl phosphate (TPHP), and monosubstituted isopropylated triaryl phosphate (mono-ITP). All four PFRs and their urinary metabolites were ubiquitously detected. Correlations between TDCIPP and TCIPP and their corresponding urinary metabolites were highly significant on the wristbands (rs = 0.5-0.65, p < 0.001), which suggest that wristbands can serve as strong predictors of cumulative, 5-day exposure and may be an improved metric compared to hand wipes.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Air Pollution, Indoor / analysis*
  • Environmental Exposure / analysis
  • Environmental Monitoring / instrumentation
  • Environmental Monitoring / methods*
  • Equipment Design
  • Female
  • Flame Retardants / analysis*
  • Flame Retardants / metabolism
  • Hand
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Organophosphates / metabolism
  • Organophosphates / urine*
  • Silicones / chemistry*
  • Surveys and Questionnaires


  • Flame Retardants
  • Organophosphates
  • Silicones