Early hepatic histologic alterations among chemical (vinyl monomer) workers

Hepatology. May-Jun 1984;4(3):413-8. doi: 10.1002/hep.1840040310.


Focal hepatocellular hyperplasia and focal mixed (hepatocytes and sinusoidal cells) hyperplasia are early histological alterations indicative of vinyl monomer exposure. To evaluate their uses in screening chemical workers, 93 liver biopsy specimens from 78 persons were examined in double-blind duplicative fashion. Forty-eight specimens were from exposed chemical workers, 35 of them having liver biopsy(ies) for hepatic test abnormalities and 13 for nonliver -related reasons. A comparison group consisted of 30 nonchemical workers who had undergone liver biopsy for nonliver related reasons. Twenty-three of the exposed workers (48%) had hepatic lesions consistent with exposure: 17 (35%) of these had focal hepatocytic hyperplasia, while 6 (13%) had focal mixed hyperplasia or more advanced lesions. Only five of the comparison group had like findings: four (13%) had focal hepatocytic hyperplasia; one had focal mixed hyperplasia and sinusoidal dilatation. This individual had persistent hepatic test abnormalities with the focal mixed hyperplasia and a sinusoidal dilatation, and on subsequent biopsy, angiosarcoma (and a history of using hair spray containing vinyl chloride propellant ). Ten individuals had 25 multiple biopsies also read double-blindly; 10 had two or more readings of the same biopsy. Duplicate 21 of 23 (91%) and multiple 27 of 28 (96%) biopsy interpretations in the same individual were identical. Only 6% of either duplicate and/or multiple readings disagreed. Both focal hepatocellular and mixed hyperplasia were always associated with abnormalities in hepatic test results of which indocyanine green clearance was the most sensitive and gamma-glutamyl transpeptidase the least specific.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Biopsy
  • Chemical Industry*
  • Chemical and Drug Induced Liver Injury*
  • Double-Blind Method
  • Female
  • Hemangiosarcoma / chemically induced
  • Hemangiosarcoma / pathology
  • Humans
  • Hyperplasia / chemically induced
  • Indocyanine Green / metabolism
  • Liver / pathology*
  • Liver Diseases / pathology
  • Liver Neoplasms / chemically induced
  • Liver Neoplasms / pathology
  • Male
  • Occupational Diseases / chemically induced
  • Occupational Diseases / pathology
  • Vinyl Chloride / poisoning*
  • Vinyl Compounds / poisoning*


  • Vinyl Compounds
  • Indocyanine Green
  • Vinyl Chloride