Effects of bioaerosol exposure on work-related symptoms among Swiss sawmill workers

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It was possible to publish this article open access thanks to a Swiss National Licence with the publisher.
Serval ID
serval:BIB_B4AA3AA89E66
Type
Article: article from journal or magazin.
Collection
Publications
Institution
Title
Effects of bioaerosol exposure on work-related symptoms among Swiss sawmill workers
Journal
International Archives of Occupational and Environmental Health
Author(s)
Rusca Sophie, Charrière Nicole, Droz Pierre-Olivier, Oppliger Anne
ISSN
0340-0131
Publication state
Published
Issued date
2008
Peer-reviewed
Oui
Volume
81
Number
4
Pages
415-421
Language
english
Notes
SAPHIRID:64140
Abstract
Objective Exposure to bioaerosols in the occupational environment of sawmills could be associated with a wide range of health effects, in particular respiratory impairment, allergy and organic dust toxic syndrome. The objective of the study was to assess the frequency of medical respiratory and general symptoms and their relation to bioaerosol exposure. Method Twelve sawmills in the French part of Switzerland were investigated and the relationship between levels of bioaerosols (wood dust, airborne bacteria, airborne fungi and endotoxins), medical symptoms and impaired lung function was explored. A health questionnaire was distributed to 111 sawmill workers. Results The concentration of airborne fungi exceeded the limit recommended by the Swiss National Insurance (SUVA) in the twelve sawmills. This elevated fungi level significantly influenced the occurrence of bronchial syndrome (defined by cough and expectorations). No other health effects (irritations or respiratory effects) could be associated to the measured exposures. We observed that junior workers showed significantly more irritation syndrome (defined by itching/running nose, snoring and itching/red eyes) than senior workers. Lung function tests were not influenced by bioaerosol levels nor dust exposure levels. Conclusion Results suggest that occupational exposure to wood dust in a Swiss sawmill does not promote a clinically relevant decline in lung function. However, the occurrence of bronchial syndrome is strongly influenced by airborne fungi levels. [Authors]
Keywords
Air Pollutants, Occupational , Air Microbiology , Bacteria , Endotoxins , Fungi , Dust , Environmental Monitoring , Wood , Occupational Exposure , Occupational Diseases , Respiratory Tract Diseases
Pubmed
Web of science
Open Access
Yes
Create date
23/02/2009 15:53
Last modification date
01/10/2019 6:19
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