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Document ID (ISN)103159
CIS number 04-103
ISSN - Serial title 1351-0711 - Occupational and Environmental Medicine
Year 2004
Convention or series no.
Author(s) Barnard C.G., McBride D.I., Firth H.M., Herbison G.P.
Title Assessing individual employee risk factors for occupational asthma in primary aluminium smelting
Bibliographic information July 2004, Vol.61, No.7, p.604-608. 38 ref.
Abstract To assess the importance of individual risk factors in the development of occupational asthma (OA) among primary aluminium smelting workers, a case-control study was carried out among workers employed in areas with moderate to high levels of dust and fume. 45 cases diagnosed with OA and four controls per case were matched for the same year of employment and age group. The pre-employment medical questionnaires were reviewed. Further information on demographics and details of allergic symptoms, respiratory risk factors, respiratory symptoms were obtained through medical examinations. Finally, all participants were subjected to spirometry. There was a significant positive association between hay fever and OA (odds ratio OR 3.58). A higher forced expiratory ratio (FER) at employment reduced the risk of developing OA (OR 0.93). The risk of OA was more than three times higher in individuals with an FER of 70.0-74.9% than in individuals with an FER ≥80.0% (OR 3.46). Individuals with hay fever may be more susceptible to OA when exposed to airborne irritants in primary aluminium production. The pathological basis may be reduced nasal filtration and increased bronchial hyperresponsiveness.
Descriptors (primary) aluminium industry; occupational diseases; smelting plants; risk factors; asthma
Descriptors (secondary) allergens; airborne dust; bronchi; symptoms; mists; allergic reactivity; respiratory function tests; spirometry; medical examinations; allergic respiratory disorders; case-control study
Document type D - Periodical articles
Country / State or ProvinceAustralia
Subject(s) Metal production and metalworking
Broad subject area(s) Industries and occupations
Browse category(ies) Smelting and refining operations
Diseases of the respiratory system (except for pneumoconiosis & similar)