1.191
IF5
0.947
IF
15
MNiSW
146.95
ICV
ORIGINAL PAPER
 
 

Work-related respiratory symptoms among health centres cleaners: A cross-sectional study

 
1
Department of Occupational Diseases and Toxicology, Nofer Institute of Occupational Medicine, Łódź, Poland
2
Department of Occupational Diseases and Toxicology, Nofer Institute of Occupational Medicine, św. Teresy 8, 91-348, Łódź, Poland
3
Department of Occupational Allergy and Environmental Health, Nofer Institute of Occupational Medicine, Łódź, Poland
Int J Occup Med Environ Health 2014;27(3):460–466
KEYWORDS:
ABSTRACT:
Objectives: Several studies, mostly based on questionnaire-derived data, have shown an increased risk of allergic diseases, especially asthma, among cleaners. The risk factors and etiological mechanisms are still being investigated. Occupational exposure to various chemical and biological agents may induce specific sensitization and/or irritant effects. The aim of our study was to estimate the prevalence of work-related symptoms suggesting the presence of allergic disease reported by cleaners, and to relate them to the results of commercially available and standardized objective tests used for screening detection of occupational sensitization and chronic respiratory disorders. Material and Methods: A cross-sectional study was performed among 142 Polish workers of cleaning service in their workplaces. A detailed questionnaire, skin prick tests to common allergens and chemicals used by these workers for cleaning purposes (chloramine T, chlorhexidine, formaldehyde, glutaraldehyde, benzalconium chloride), total and specific serum IgE antibodies to disinfectants and rest spirometry were performed in all the subjects. Results: Fifty nine percent of all the subjects declared occurrence of at least 1 symptom suggesting allergic ailment during cleaning activities at work. Skin prick tests and specific serum IgE antibodies to disinfectants were negative in all the subjects. In 8 cases wheezing was detected during auscultation, but only in 5 of them obstructive pattern in rest spirometry was found. Conclusions: Occupational allergic causation of symptoms among cleaners could be less likely than work-related symptoms associated with exacerbations of new-onset or pre-existing respiratory diseases. Therefore, in this group of workers, mainly the non-specific irritant impact of chemicals on airways should be taken into consideration.
eISSN:1896-494X
ISSN:1232-1087