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Allergy Proc 1990 May/Jun; 11(3):131-132
Prophylactic measures for the prevention of occupational diseases due to exposure to food allergens were considered. Case histories of two egg production industry employees experiencing occupational asthma were presented to illustrate the need for more effective secondary and tertiary prevention. The first patient was responsible for candling and breaking eggs and suffered from job related wheezing, runny nose, sneezing, and reduced peak expiratory flow rates. A positive skin prick test to whole egg, egg white, and ovalbumin was derived. This case indicated the need for early and aggressive identification of asthma in high risk environments. The second case showed how workers try to suppress symptoms to avoid termination or placement in a lower paying position. This patient suffered from symptoms similar to the first patient's but was taking theophylline. Her peak expiratory flow rate declined over 20% when exposed to egg products. Positive radioallergosorbent tests to whole egg, yolk, conalbumin, lysozyme, and ovomucoid were seen. The authors emphasize the need for effective approaches to primary prevention and the use of medical surveillance and environmental monitoring where food related inhalation hazards exist.
NIOSH-Author; Food-handlers; Food-processing-industry; Bronchial-asthma; Occupational-diseases; Occupational-exposure; Allergic-reactions; Disease-prevention; Prophylaxis; Case-studies; Environmental-health-monitoring; Surveillance-programs
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Page last reviewed: May 5, 2020
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division