Our aim was to investigate the relationship between suspected occupational hazards and airflow obstruction in industrial workers.
The study was a cross-sectional survey of 314 male workers from a chalkpowder plant (n=158) and from a sugar refinery (n=156).
Occupational exposure to chalkpowder and sugar dust was assessed by individual job classification.
Outcome variables included respiratory symptoms and routine spirometric parameters.
Statistical analysis was done for each industry separately.
Overall, mean pulmonary function parameters fell either within or above the normal range in both industries.
However, analysis by job classification showed that in the chalkpowder plant, all indices of airway obstruction declined significantly with increasing dustiness.
Additionally, workers in the dustiest workplace (chalk sacking) had significantly lower airflow parameters than workers from other workstations.
In the sugar refinery, workers exposed to sugar dust in the sugar cube manufacture workstation had significantly lower forced expiratory volume in 1 s (FEV1) (p=0.02) than the non-exposed ones.
For both industries, the proportion of subjects complaining of cough and/or phlegm was greater among the most exposed subgroups than among the remaining workers but the differences were not statistically significant.
In conclusion, coupling spirometry to job classification proved useful in disclosing a relationship between airflow obstruction and exposure to either ch...
Mots-clés Pascal : Craie, Poudre, Industrie sucrière, Fonction respiratoire, Exposition professionnelle, Poussière, Médecine travail, Calcium carbonate, Homme, Obstruction, Spirométrie, Appareil respiratoire pathologie, Toxicité
Mots-clés Pascal anglais : Chalk, Powder, Sugar industry, Lung function, Occupational exposure, Dust, Occupational medicine, Calcium carbonate, Human, Obstruction, Spirometry, Respiratory disease, Toxicity
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Inist-CNRS - Institut de l'Information Scientifique et Technique
Cote : 96-0257128
Code Inist : 002B03L03. Création : 199608.