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Author Topic: Should I be worried about my testicles overheating?  (Read 16796 times)

Offline Madidus_Scientia

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I work in a galvanizing plant, and I work up on the "kettle", which is basically a huge tub of molten zinc, at 450 celsius. For those who don't know galvanizing is the process of dipping steel into zinc to coat it so it doesn't rust. Anyway, before and during raising it back up out of the zinc we have a person on each side of it sweeping the layer of ash that forms on the surface away from the job, so it doesn't stick to it and ruin the coating (my job). Depending on how tricky the job we're working on is we can be there for around 20 minutes or maybe even more, and when we finish one job we're straight onto the other one so we only really get a few minutes rest from the heat at a time. I've been doing this for about 4 or 5 months now and its always been hot but bearable, I'm not usually one to whinge. But now that it's summer it is very, very hot up there. Before long my clothes are completely soaked with sweat, once my phone stopped working for a while because I had it in my pocket and it was wet at the end of the day. My socks get soaked within a few hours from sweat running off my body down my legs. In my corner of the world it can often be 30 degrees celsius or more during the day, and it rains alot (I was actually flooded in the other morning, check this out! http://img122.imageshack.us/my.php?image=image043rb3.jpg lucky i parked on the grass not the street!) so its very humid. Actually as I write this google tells me its 27 degrees and 89% humidity, and this is at 10:30pm.

So i've been looking up health and safety laws about this and I came across this:

"Reproductive Disorders: Both male and female workers who are exposed to radiant heat, or
required to work in extreme temperatures for long periods may suffer reproductive disorders,
such as abnormal sperm counts, and birth deformities."
(from http://www.psa.labor.net.au/publications/files/HEATPSApolicy.pdf )

I knew that sperm had to be at a temperature a bit cooler than body temperature, which is why the testicles hang out of the body, but if they do become overheated is it just that the sperm dies and that's it? So if I did plan on impregnating someone, could I just have a day off work first and all would be fine? Or does the heat do some kind of permanent damage? I do remember reading once about how men who ejaculate often are less likely to develop testicular cancer because when dead sperm cells break down they release some kind of carcinogen. Am I loading my balls up with carcinogens? (Maybe the company should make us have a masturbation break every so often - ROFL)

What i'd love is some kind of air-conditioned suit, or maybe just one that you plug a compressed air hose into and it blows it around inside our overalls. But such a thing might be impractical because we do need to have mobility. Any other ideas? It would need to have protection against molten zinc splatters too.

I've purchased a little digital thermometer today, i'm going to clip it onto my overalls at work tomorrow and see what temperatures i'm really working in.
« Last Edit: 30/11/2008 12:56:16 by Madidus_Scientia »


 

Offline RD

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Should I be worried about my testicles overheating?
« Reply #1 on: 30/11/2008 15:51:35 »
I knew that sperm had to be at a temperature a bit cooler than body temperature, which is why the testicles hang out of the body,
 but if they do become overheated is it just that the sperm dies and that's it? So if I did plan on impregnating someone,
 could I just have a day off work first and all would be fine?

If the heat was affecting your fertility you'd have to take a few months off from hot work to recover ...

Quote
The spermatozoa take over 70 days to develop and are produced solely in the testicles. Individual sperm develop within the testicles from a cell called a spermatogonium.

The spermatogonium divides to produce spermatocytes, which then develop into spermatids. The spermatid develops its familiar tail and the cell gradually acquires the ability to move by beating its tail.

The spermatid eventually develops into a mature spermatozoan. This process takes about 60 days and the sperm then takes a further 10 to 14 days to pass through the ducts of each testicle and its sperm-maturing tube, the epididymis, before it can leave the body in the semen, during ejaculation. 
http://www.netdoctor.co.uk/menshealth/facts/semenandsperm.htm


What i'd love is some kind of air-conditioned suit, or maybe just one that you plug a compressed air hose into and it blows it around inside our overalls. But such a thing might be impractical because we do need to have mobility. Any other ideas? It would need to have protection against molten zinc splatters too.
Foundry clothing doesn't look very cool in either sense of the word.
NASA's solution to humans overheating is water cooled garments with many fine tubes of circulating water.


Quote
Provide Cooling Using Alternative Measures
There are also alternative ways to cool the body besides shade. Before using alternative cooling measures make sure they are safe to use for the conditions in your workplace.

Alternative cooling measures include, but are not limited to, cooling employees by:

Putting them in an air-conditioned environment, if available
Using misting machines
Giving a cool shower, bath, or sponge bath if available
Immersing them in a tub of cool water
Spraying them with cool water from a garden hose or other sources
Wrapping them in a cool, wet sheet or towel and fanning vigorously. Use this only if the humidity is low and evaporation is not restricted
Using wetted clothing (e.g., terry cloth coveralls or wetted whole-body cotton suits). Use this only if the humidity is low and evaporation is not restricted.
Directing compressed air of less than 10psi (see Cal/OSHA T8 CCR 3301) around the body from a supplied air system. This improves evaporative and convective cooling (i.e., cooling from a moving fluid)
Using cooling vests (e.g., commercially available ice vests)
Using water-cooled garments (e.g., hoods, vests and "long johns"). These require a battery-driven circulating pump, liquid-ice coolant, and a container
Using battery operated, hand held, portable cooling devices or equipment
Using air cooled garments (e.g., suits or hoods)

http://www.dir.ca.gov/dosh/etools/08-006/PreventingAndResponding2s2.htm
« Last Edit: 30/11/2008 16:12:18 by RD »
 

Offline Madidus_Scientia

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Should I be worried about my testicles overheating?
« Reply #2 on: 01/12/2008 07:38:46 »
Thanks RD!
 

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Should I be worried about my testicles overheating?
« Reply #2 on: 01/12/2008 07:38:46 »

 

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