OCCUPATIONAL EXPOSURE TO WOOD DUST AND HEALTH EFFECTS ON THE RESPIRATORY SYSTEM IN A MINOR INDUSTRIAL ESTATE IN BURSA/TURKEY


Osman E., PALA K.

INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF OCCUPATIONAL MEDICINE AND ENVIRONMENTAL HEALTH, vol.22, no.1, pp.43-50, 2009 (Journal Indexed in SCI) identifier identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 22 Issue: 1
  • Publication Date: 2009
  • Doi Number: 10.2478/v10001-009-0008-5
  • Title of Journal : INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF OCCUPATIONAL MEDICINE AND ENVIRONMENTAL HEALTH
  • Page Numbers: pp.43-50

Abstract

Objectives: The aim of this study was to estimate occupational exposure to wood dust in the furniture industry in a minor industrial estate in Bursa/Turkey. Materials and Methods: The study was conducted between October 2006 and May 2007. In this study, a total of 656 persons, 328 woodworkers and 328 controls were included. A questionnaire was used in the study. Physical examination and the pulmonary function tests (MIR-Spirobank G) of the workers were performed. A portable Aircheck 2000 pump was used to collect the specimens of wood dust from the workplaces. NIOSH Method 0500 was employed for the gravimetric measurements of dust. Results: The average dust concentration at the workplace was 2.04 +/- 1.53 mg/m(3). It was reported that 176 of workers (53.7%) had blocked nose while working, 141 (43.0%) had redness of the eyes, 135 (41.2%) had itching eyes and 78 (23.8%) had runny nose. No symptoms were observed in the control group while they were working at the workplace. The mean FEV1 and FVC values of woodworkers, among both smokers and non smokers, were significantly low, although the FEV1/FVC value was high (p < 0.05). An increase both in FEV1 and FVC values was detected among the woodworkers who had a working period less than 10 years and were exposed to wood dust at concentrations over 4 mg/m(3) compared to the woodworkers who were exposed to wood dust at less than 4 mg/m(3) (p < 0.05). Conclusions: As a result, in this study it was pointed out that the exposure to wood dust adversely influenced the workers respiratory functions. Besides, in this study a question associated with the healthy worker effect that can adversely influence health of workers exposed to wood dust at less than (4 mg/m(3)) is revealed.