Audiometric findings in workers exposed to low levels of styrene and noise.
Morata-TC; Johnson-AC; Nylen-P; Svensson-EB; Cheng-J; Krieg-EF; Lindblad-AC; Ernstgard-L; Franks-J
J Occup Environ Med 2002 Sep; 44(9):806-814
Audiometry and exposure measurements were conducted on workers from fiberglass and metal products manufacturing plants and a mail distribution terminal (N = 313). Workers exposed to noise and styrene had significantly worse pure-tone thresholds at 2, 3, 4, and 6 kHz when compared with noise-exposed or nonexposed workers. Age, noise exposure, and urinary mandelic acid (a biologic marker for styrene) were the variables that met the significance level criterion in the multiple logistic regression. The odds ratios for hearing loss were 1.19 for each increment of 1 year of age (95% confidence interval [CI], 1.11-1.28), 1.18 for every decibel >85 dB(A) of noise exposure (95% CI, 1.01-1.34), and 2.44 for each millimole of mandelic acid per gram of creatinine in urine (95% CI, 1.01-5.89). Our findings suggest that exposure to styrene even below recommended values had a toxic effect on the auditory system.
Animals; Hearing-loss; Noise-exposure; Solvents; Neurotoxicity; Respiratory-irritants; Auditory-system
Thais Morata, NIOSH/MS C-27, 4676 Columbia Parkway, Cincinnati, OH 45226
Disease and Injury: Hearing Loss
Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine