Exposure to flour dust may induce chronic respiratory manifestations as well as acute ventilatory effects.
We compared the prevalence of respiratory symptoms, ventilatory impairment, and variations in pulmonary function over the workshift in a group of mill workers exposed to wheat flour and in referent workers.
One hundred and forty-two men exposed to flour in a mill and 37 referent workers were included in this study.
The assessment of environmental exposure to flour showed high concentrations during some jobs with a high percentage of inhalable particles and a low concentration of respirable particles.
The exposed workers had a significantly higher prevalence of usual cough and usual phlegm than the referents.
The prevalence of asthma, based on the questionnaire, was similar.
Among the exposed workers, the asthmatic subjects had a significantly higher decrease across the shift than the nonasthmatic workers.
This result is probably linked to bronchial hyperreactivity.
Moreover, the data suggest that asthmatic status and the time of spirometric measurements need to be taken into account in epidemiological studies on exposure to airborne allergens.
In addition, the study does not exclude a healthy worker effect with selection of dust-resistant subjects or better identification of asthmatic subjects among the workers exposed to an allergenic substance than among the nonexposed workers.
Mots-clés Pascal : Farine blé, Poussière, Exposition professionnelle, Asthme, Fonction respiratoire, Toxicité, Homme, Meunerie, Lieu travail, Médecine travail, Appareil respiratoire pathologie, Bronchopneumopathie obstructive, Allergie, Immunopathologie
Mots-clés Pascal anglais : Wheat flour, Dust, Occupational exposure, Asthma, Lung function, Toxicity, Human, Milling plant, Work place, Occupational medicine, Respiratory disease, Obstructive pulmonary disease, Allergy, Immunopathology
Notice produite par :
Inist-CNRS - Institut de l'Information Scientifique et Technique
Cote : 95-0523119
Code Inist : 002B03L03. Création : 01/03/1996.