REVIEW PAPER
A systematic review of the health impacts of occupational exposure to wildland fires
Emily Groot 1, 2, 3
,  
Alexa Caturay 2, 3
,  
Yasmin Khan 3, 4
,  
Ray Copes 5  
 
 
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1
Northern Ontario School of Medicine, Thunder Bay, Canada (Clinical Sciences)
2
Queen’s University, Kingston, Canada (Department of Family Medicine)
3
Public Health Ontario, Toronto, Canada (Communicable Diseases, Emergency Preparedness and Response)
4
University of Toronto, Toronto, Canada (Department of Medicine)
5
Public Health Ontario, Toronto, Canada (Environmental and Occupational Health)
CORRESPONDING AUTHOR
Ray Copes   

Public Health Ontario, Environmental and Occupational Health, 480 University Avenue, Suite 300, Toronto, Ontario, Canada M5G1V2
 
Int J Occup Med Environ Health 2019;32(2):121–140
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ABSTRACT
The aim of the paper is to summarize the evidence of health impacts of occupational exposure to wildland fires. The authors searched 3 databases for relevant articles and screened the results. After full-text review, articles were included based on pre-determined criteria. The authors identified 32 relevant articles. Occupational exposure to wildland fires affects lung function in the short term and may increase the risk of hypertension in the long term. Exposure to wildland fires is also associated with post-traumatic stress symptoms. There was insufficient evidence to comment on most longer-term risks, and in particular on respiratory disease or cancer risks. Further research is required to understand whether occupational exposure to wildland fires results in clinically significant impacts on respiratory function, and to further clarify the relationship between occupational exposure and blood pressure, mental health, and cancer outcomes. Int J Occup Med Environ Health. 2019;32(2):121–40
eISSN:1896-494X
ISSN:1232-1087