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Impact of work in industry and occupation on prevalence of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease in the US population.

Hnizdo E; Glindmeyer H; Attfield M
Am J Respir Crit Care Med 2003 Apr; 167(7):A718
In a previous study of the third National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES III) data, we identified industries associated with increased risk of COPD defined by GOLD (Global Initiative for COPD) Stage II criteria. In this investigation we evaluated the impact of work in at-risk industries on the overall US prevalence of COPD. We also evaluated the potential of the GOLD criteria and the NHANES III data to develop expected prevalences of COPD for detection of excess prevalence of COPD among worker populations. We analyzed data from the NHANES III study using SUDAAN to estimate US age specific prevalences of COPD, adjusted for smoking and other factors. Next, we compared overall US age-specific prevalences including and excluding at-risk industries. Finally, we compared the age-specific prevalences of COPD in isocyanate spray-painters to these US estimates. The estimated US age specific prevalences of COPD were significantly increased by inclusion of the at risk industries. At age 50, the increase was comparable to the prevalence of COPD found in never smokers (5%) and was approximately 30% of the prevalence of 15% found in smokers. The US age-specific prevalence of COPD based on GOLD Stage 0 criteria appeared useful for identifying worker populations at increased risk of COPD. Employment in at-risk industries impacted the US prevalence of COPD estimated from NHANES III data. This effect should be considered when estimating prevalences of COPD for comparison with prevalences in worker populations.
Chronic-exposure; Pulmonary-system-disorders; Workers; Occupational-exposure; Risk-factors; Age-factors; Respiratory-system-disorders; Surveillance
Publication Date
Document Type
Abstract; Conference/Symposia Proceedings
Email Address
Fiscal Year
Issue of Publication
NIOSH Division
Priority Area
Disease and Injury: Asthma and Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease
Source Name
American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine, 2003 International Conference, The American Thoracic Society, Seattle, WA, May 16-21, 2003
Page last reviewed: October 26, 2020
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division