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Pulmonary function tests in stainlesssteel utensil polish workers-a cross sectional study

Author: 
Dr. Panneerselvam, T., Dr. Kumudha, P., Dr. Vishnu Priya M. and Dr. Sangeetha, K. P.
Subject Area: 
Health Sciences
Abstract: 

Introduction: The pulmonary function tests give an objective assessment of the functional status of the respiratory system and indicate the nature and extent of the functional disturbance in disorders associated with pulmonary impairment and disability. Spirometry is valuable in industrial medicine, to study the lung involvement in occupational diseases which occur in workers of textile mills, coal mines and other occupations in which they are exposed to various forms of air pollutants. Several research workers have confirmed the ill effects of air pollutants on respiratory functions of human being. In stainless steel utensil polishing industries the workers are exposed to carbon black and chromium dust. This prompted us to undertake this study to assess the pulmonary function tests in the stainless steel utensil polish workers. Aim: To perform pulmonary function test in stainless steel utensil workers to evaluate and analyze whether long term occupational exposure to stainless steel utensil polishing dust which contains carbon black and chromium affects lung functions. Materials and Methods: This cross sectional study was carried out to assess and evaluate the effects of stainless steel utensil polishing dust on the lung function. The study involved 65 male workers exposed to stainless steel utensil polishing dust and 50 healthy individuals as control group. The workers were aged between 18-32 years and the duration of employment was above 5 years. The control group also aged between 18-32 years. The micromedical superspiro was used for this study. The procedure was explained to the subject repeatedly in detail. The maneuver was demonstrated to each subject separately before performing the test. The pulmonary function test was conducted by seating the subject comfortably in chair with spine erect position. The following functional parameters, Forced Expiratory Volume in first second (FEV1), Forced Vital Capacity (FVC), Peak Expiratory Flow Rate (PEF), FEV1 as percentage of VC (FEV1/VC), Maximum Expired Flow Rate at 75%, 50%, 25% of FVC remaining such as MEF75, MEF50, MEF25, Mean Mid Expiratory Flow Rate (MMEF Or FEF 25-75%), Maximum Voluntary Ventilation Indicated (MVV Ind), Forced Inspiratory Volume In First Second ( FIV1), Forced Inspiratory Vital Capacity (FIVC), Peak Inspiratory Flow Rate (PIF), Maximum Expiratory Flow Rate 50/ Maximum Inspiratory Flow Rate 50 (MEF50/ MIF50), Forced Expiratory Time (FET) were studied. Results: The FEV1, FVC, PEF, FEVI/FVC, MEF50, MEF25, MMEF, MVVInd, FIV1, FIVC, PIF, MEF50/ MIF50 and FET values were used for this study. The data collected were statistically analysed by using students‘t’- test. Having analysed the results in our study the following was inferred. The FEV1, FVC, PEF, MEF75, MEF50, MMEF, MVVInd, FIV1, FIVC, PIF, FET showed significant decrease in stainless steel utensil polish workers than control group. The FEV1/ FVC, MEF50/ MIF50, MEF25 showed a slight increase in stainless steel utensil polish workers when compared to control group, suggesting a restrictive pulmonary parenchymal disease. Conclusion: As per the PFT results, among the 65 polish workers 26 workers have mild restriction, 16 workers have moderate restriction and 23 workers have severe restriction. Hence it is concluded that yearly assessment of pulmonary function is necessary for evaluation of the respiratory risk from carbon black and chromium dust environment to plan further preventive intervention.

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