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Mortality patterns of US female construction workers by race, 1979-1990.

Robinson CF; Burnett CA
J Occup Med 1994 Nov; 36(11):1228-1233
Mortality among US female construction workers was studied. Death certificates from 28 states participating in the National Occupational Mortality Surveillance (NOMS) system for the period 1979 to 1990 were reviewed to analyze mortality among black and white female construction workers. Proportionate mortality ratios (PMRs) were computed using mortality of all women in the study population having the same age specific mortality rates as the reference. A total of 5,504 deaths occurred among white female construction workers and 304 occurred among black female construction workers during the study period. These represented 1.9 and 0.1% of the total number of deaths in the US construction industry, respectively. Among white female construction workers, mortality from all cancers, lung cancer, and traumatic injuries was significantly elevated, PMRs 107, 118, and 138, respectively. Mortality from colon, bone, skin, connective tissue, and breast cancer and suicide was marginally significantly increased, PMRs 109 to 123. Among black female construction workers, mortality from traumatic injuries was significantly increased, PMR 138. Lung cancer mortality was marginally significantly elevated, PMR 178. Among specific construction trades, white females employed as drywall installers had significantly increased mortality from lymphatic cancer, those employed as paperhangers had significant excess mortality from nonHodgkin's lymphoma, and those employed as roofers had significantly increased mortality from nonmalignant respiratory diseases, PMRs 860, 600, and 475, respectively. Among black females, mortality from lymphatic cancer was significantly elevated among carpet installers and mortality from nonmalignant respiratory disorders was significantly elevated among construction laborers, PMRs 828 and 373, respectively. The authors conclude that the mortality pattern among female construction workers is generally similar to that of male construction workers.
NIOSH-Author; Construction-workers; Epidemiology; Sex-factors; Mortality-data; Information-systems; Surveillance-programs; Job-analysis; Racial-factors
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Journal Article
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Journal of Occupational Medicine
Page last reviewed: June 15, 2021
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division