Respiratory morbidity in wollastonite workers.
Hanke-W; Sepulveda-J; Watson-A; Jankovic-J
Br J Ind Med 1984 Nov; 41(4):474-479
A survey of respiratory morbidity among wollastonite (13983170) workers was conducted. The survey included 108 male wollastonite miners or mill workers with a mean age of 36 and an average of 10 to 11 years of expsoure. The comparison group consisted of 86 male employees of a nearby electronics component manufacturing facility with an average age of 42. The subjects filled out a questionnaire on smoking, respiratory symptoms, and work history. Spirometric tests were administered. Chest X-rays were taken. Simple pneumoconiosis was found in three of the wollastonite workers. Radiological progression beyond category 1 pneumonconiosis was not observed in their chest X-ray films. Smokers among both the cohort and comparisons had significantly higher incidences of chronic cough, chronic phlegm, and chronic bronchitis than nonsmokers; however, the difference between the two groups was not significant. Forced expiratory volume in 1 second (FEV1), the FEV1/forced vital capacity (FVC) ratio, and peak flow rate were lower in the wollastonite workers than in the comparisons. Workers having more than 30 dust years of exposure had significantly lower mean FEV1/FVC ratios and peak flow rates than comparisons. The authors conclude that obstructive ventilatory effects result from wollastonite exposure. The observed decrement in peak flow rates suggests that at minimum the large airways are affected. The small airways may also be affected.
NIOSH-Author; Morbidity-rates; Industrial-dusts; Employee-exposure; Occupational-respiratory-disease; Occupational-medicine; Industrial-medicine; Medical-surveys; Lung-function; Radiographic-analysis; Physiological-response;
British Journal of Industrial Medicine