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Work-related asthma, Massachusetts SENSOR, 1993 - 2004.

Pechter E
SENSOR Occup Lung Dis Bull 2005 Dec; :1-4
This issue of the Bulletin includes a summary of cases of work-related asthma (WRA) reported to Massachusetts SENSOR from 1993 through 2004. Although the number of cases identified by the surveillance system is believed to be only a small fraction of the total number of WRA cases in the Commonwealth, the data provide important information about the industries and occupations where workers are at risk of WRA and about workplace exposures that need to be addressed. A more in-depth analysis of the data is planned. Enclosed with this Bulletin is an updated copy of "Reporting Occupational Diseases and Injuries in Massachusetts," a brochure summarizing health care providers' responsibility under pubic health law to report select injuries and illnesses to us. Please continue to report cases of work-related asthma. Cases of work-related asthma (WRA) are sentinel health events that indicate the need for preventive intervention. Massachusetts and three other states track cases of WRA to identify these sentinel health events and describe the industries, occupations and exposures that need attention. For surveillance purposes, a case of work-related asthma is defined as an individual with a physician's diagnosis of asthma and an association between the symptoms of asthma and work. WRA includes two main categories: 1) pre-existing asthma aggravated by workplace exposures, and 2) new onset asthma caused by sensitizers or irritants in the workplace. Reactive Airways Dysfunction Syndrome (RADS) is a subset of new onset asthma distinguished by persistent asthma symptoms caused by a one-time high level irritant exposure.
Occupational-diseases; Occupational-health; Lung-disease; Work-environment; Workers; Occupational-exposure; Respiratory-system-disorders; Pulmonary-system-disorders; Bronchial-asthma; Employee-exposure; Occupational-respiratory-disease; Health-care; Disease-prevention; Airway-resistance; Surveillance-programs; Medical-monitoring; Lung-irritants; Information-systems; Statistical-analysis
Massachusetts Department of Public Health, Occupational Health Surveillance Program, 250 Washington Street, 6th Floor, Boston, MA 02108
Publication Date
Document Type
Funding Type
Cooperative Agreement
Fiscal Year
Identifying No.
Source Name
SENSOR Occupational Lung Disease Bulletin
Performing Organization
Massachusetts State Department of Public Health
Page last reviewed: September 2, 2020
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division