The effects of occupational exposure to lead on the auditory system: an analysis of the literature.
Jacob-LCB; de Freitas Alvarenga-K; Morata-TC
Rev Bras Otorrinolaringol 2002 Jul-Aug; 68(4):564-569
Despite the fact that the term occupational hearing loss is usually associated with noise-induced hearing loss, the scientific literature indicates that there are other work-related agents that can be damaging to the worker's auditory health. Lead is considered as one of these agents, and several researchers have investigated its effects on the auditory system. There are numerous studies on the effects from lead intoxication to the body, which demonstrate that multiple organs can be affected. However, investigations of the auditory effects of lead are scarce, and offer conflicting results. Studies that take into consideration the combined exposure to lead and other agents, as noise, are practically unexistent. The industrial uses of this metal are extensive and usually the work conditions in a large number of Brazilian industries expose the worker to high lead concentrations. The studies reviewed in the present paper indicate that the consequences of lead exposure to the peripheral and central auditory system are not yet fully understood. Moreover, due to the seriousness of the potential risk, they underscore the need for further research on the effects of more than one agent to workers' hearing health. Published in Portuguese.
Lead-compounds; Lead-dust; Hearing-loss; Noise; Auditory-system; Noise-induced-hearing-loss; Workers;
Author Keywords: chumbo; perda auditiva, ruído; sistema auditivo central; lead; hearing loss; noise; central auditory system
Jacob-LCB, Docente do Programa de Pos-Graduacao - Mestrado em Disturbios da Comunicacao da Universidade Tuiuti do Parana - Curitiba - PR, doutora em Disturbios da Comunicacao pela Universidade de Sao Paulo - Bauru - SP
Disease and Injury: Hearing Loss
Revista Brasileira De Otorrinolaringologia