Prevalence of work-related dermatitis in the working population: authors' response to letter from Rosenman and Fussman.
Luckhaupt SE; Sussell AL; Sweeney MH; Sestito JP; Calvert GM
Am J Ind Med 2014 Jan; 57(1):127-128
As in the recent commentary by Halperin , the letter from Rosenman and Fussman  acknowledges that the inclusion of questions about the work-relatedness of common health conditions, including dermatitis, in the 2010 National Health Interview Survey Occupational Health Supplement (NHIS-OHS) [Luckhaupt et al., 2013] advanced knowledge on the magnitude of occupational injury and illness in the United States. Collecting data about work-related injuries and illnesses directly from workers through population-based surveys such as the NHIS bypasses some of the barriers to employer reporting of work-related conditions as found in the Survey of Occupational Illnesses and Injuries conducted by the US Department of Labor [Azaroff et al., 2002]. But, as Rosenman and Fussman point out, the estimates produced from the questions included in the 2010 NHIS-OHS, which are based on respondents having been told by a healthcare professional (HCP) that their condition was work-related, still likely underestimate the true magnitude of work-related health conditions. Barriers also exist that prevent many work-related conditions from being recognized by healthcare providers. One way of capturing data on likely work-related cases of dermatitis and other conditions is to directly ask workers for their opinions as to the work-relatedness of their condition. Although some survey questions that address worker perceptions of the work-relatedness of their conditions have been used by three states in the Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS), the specific questions varied by year and none of them were validated.
Dermatitis; Skin-exposure; Skin-irritants; Skin-sensitivity; Contact-dermatitis; Epidemiology; Surveillance-programs; Health-surveys; Questionnaires; Information-processing; Information-systems; Injuries; Diseases; Data-processing; Medical-surveys; Health-care-personnel; Workers; Worker-health; Employee-health
Sara E. Luckhaupt, MD, MPH, National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, 4676 Columbia Parkway, R-17, Cincinnati, OH 45226
American Journal of Industrial Medicine