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The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health indoor environmental evaluation experience. Part two: symptom prevalence.

Authors
Malkin-R; Wilcox-T; Sieber-WK
Source
Appl Occup Environ Hyg 1996 Jun; 11(6):540-545
NIOSHTIC No.
00232129
Abstract
Symptom prevalences of 2,435 workers within 105 office buildings that were identified in health hazard evaluations (HHE) conducted by the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health are evaluated. A questionnaire obtained information about symptoms experienced on the day of the survey and 4 weeks prior to the survey; illnesses diagnosed by physicians; and perceived comfort levels for temperature, odors, and humidity. The most common symptoms reported at work were eye strain (45%), unusual fatigue (42%), irritated eyes (42%), and nose or sinus problems (39%). Eye strain, eye irritation and fatigue improved away from work. Women reported twice as many symptoms as men. Nineteen percent of respondents met the requirements for multiple sick building syndrome. For physician diagnosed illnesses, 51% reported sinus infections, and 12% asthma. For comfort levels, 51% perceived insufficient air flow, 9% too much air flow, 35% too hot, 32% too cold, and 10% detected chemical odors. The findings demonstrate that symptoms in indoor, nonindustrial environments are pervasive and consistent with findings from the authors' previous experience. The authors conclude that the large numbers of buildings surveyed and different types of employees make the results useful for comparison of prevalence rates in other studies.
Keywords
NIOSH-Author; Indoor-air-pollution; Air-sampling; Environmental-health-monitoring; Environmental-pollution; Closed-building-syndrome; Questionnaires; Ventilation-systems; Indoor-environmental-quality
CODEN
AOEHE9
Publication Date
19960601
Document Type
Journal Article
Fiscal Year
1996
NTIS Accession No.
NTIS Price
Issue of Publication
6
ISSN
1047-322X
Source Name
Applied Occupational and Environmental Hygiene
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