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Occupational dermatoses in South Carolina: a descriptive analysis of cost variables.

Shmunes E; Keil JE
University of South Carolina, Departments of Environmental Health Sciences, College of Health, Columbia, South Carolina; :1-15
Cost variables resulting from occupationally caused skin problems were investigated. All 958 closed cases of work related skin diseases processed by the South Carolina Industrial Commission for July 1, 1978 through June 30, 1979 were examined. Cost elements in physician fees, medications, hospitalizations, disfigurement, and clinchers were recorded. Notice was also taken of the diagnosis, number of doctor visits, occupation of the employee, part of the body affected, days lost, age, sex, marital status, wages, date of rash onset, and date employer was notified. Only 134 cases responded to a questionnaire. The findings indicated that, assuming a 25 percent frequency of atopy, the relative odds of developing occupational skin disease were 13.5 times greater if the person was atopic. For atopic workers with work related dermatoses, 92.6 percent of the dermatoses could be attributed to being atopic based on the estimate of the etiologic fraction. The data indicated a good relationship between a greater number of days lost and atopy. Women accounted for a significantly greater proportion of the visits to the physician. Delays in seeing physicians were significantly correlated with an increased number of physician visits ultimately required to treat the skin condition. Delays in seeking care were statistically significantly related to higher total fees, with no effect of age. Cases where there was a history of eczema or rashes prior to the work related occurrence accounted for significantly greater compensation payments.
NIOSH-Grant; Skin-exposure; Skin-disorders; Humans; Dermatitis; Industrial-dermatoses; Occupational-dermatitis; Hypersensitivity
University of South Carolina School of Public Health Columbia, SC 29208
Document Type
Final Grant Report
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University of South Carolina, Departments of Environmental Health Sciences, College of Health, Columbia, South Carolina
Performing Organization
University of South Carolina at Columbia, Columbia, South Carolina
Page last reviewed: February 18, 2022
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division