Ramazzini; Blog on work and health by Annet Lenderink

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Legislation helps prevention

One of the most difficult things in Occupational Health is show that preventive measures really have impact on the incidence of work-related disease. In an interesting study by Jill Stocks et al. data of the registries for occupational diseases in the UK are used to study the influence of European legislation on reducing chromate exposure in cement. They found a steeper decline in allergic contact dermatitis attributed to chromate than for other types of allergic contact dermatitis after introduction of the legislation.

S J Stocks, R McNamee, S Turner, M Carder, R M Agius Has European Union legislation to reduce exposure to chromate in cement been effective in reducing the incidence of allergic contact dermatitis attributed to chromate in the UK? Occup Environ Med2012;69:150-152 Read the rest of this entry »

Filed under: Allergies, Chemical agents, Skin, , , ,

How to influence health behaviour to prevent skin cancer?

Skin cancer is an increasing problem in Europe, America and Australasia, although largely preventable by avoiding excessive ultraviolet (UV) exposure. The aim of this study was to understand elements that may contribute to the successful or unsuccessful conveyance of skin cancer prevention messages and their uptake by the public. This showed that most people perceived their susceptibility to skin cancer, and its severity, as low. While benefits of adopting changed behaviour were acknowledged, there were substantial barriers to this, including positive perceptions of a tan as healthy and attractive and the hassle of covering up or using sunscreen.

What influences the uptake of information to prevent skin cancer? A systematic review and synthesis of qualitative research
Ruth Garside, Mark Pearson and Tiffany Moxham Health Education Research 2010 25(1):162-182

Read the rest of this entry »

Filed under: No category, Occupational cancer, Skin, , ,

Silica exposure occupational cause of systemic sclerosis?

Systemic sclerosis is a rare chronic disease of unknown cause characterized by diffuse fibrosis, degenerative changes, and vascular abnormalities in the skin, joints, and internal organs (especially the esophagus, lower GI tract, lung, heart, and kidney). Common symptoms include Raynaud’s syndrome, polyarthralgia, dysphagia, heartburn, and swelling and eventually skin tightening and contractures of the fingers. Lung, heart, and kidney involvement accounts for most deaths.

Researchers from the University of Toledo (USA) examined the association between systemic sclerosis (SSc) and occupational exposure to silica. They included 16 studies in the analysis and calculated the combined estimator of relative risk (CERR) and 95% confidence interval (CI) using fixed or random effect models. The findings suggest that silica exposure may be a significant risk factor for developing SSc and specifically in males: the overall CERR was 3.20 (95% CI, 1.89–5.43), in females 1.03 (95% CI, 0.74–1.44), in males 3.02 (95% CI, 1.24–7.35).

Occupational silica exposure as a risk factor for scleroderma: a meta-analysis
Zachary D. McCormic, Sura S. Khuder, Bishwa K. Arya1, April L. Ames and Sadik A. Khuder International Archives of Occupational and Environmental Health Online: 3 January 2010 Read the rest of this entry »

Filed under: Chemical agents, Occupational diseases, Occupational exposure, Skin, ,

More skin and respiratory problems in professional cleaners

schoonmaaksterIndoor professional cleaners and other building workers (OBW) completed a questionnaire to compare rash and respiratory symptoms  and examine workplace factors such as training, protective equipment and work tasks.

The prevalence of rash was significantly higher in the cleaners compared to the OBW. For male cleaners, 21% (86/413) versus 11% (13/115) of OBW (P < 0.05). The rashes experienced by the cleaners were more likely to be on their hands and worse at work.

Cleaners washed their hands significantly more often than OBW. Cleaners with a rash were less likely to have received workplace training regarding their skin and were more likely to find the safety training hard to understand.

Cleaners with a rash within the past year were significantly more likely to have work-related asthma symptoms than cleaners without a rash (P < 0.001).

Cutaneous and respiratory symptoms among professional cleaners
Carrie B. Lynde, Maya Obadia, Gary M. Liss, Marcos Ribeiro, D. Linn Holness and Susan M. Tarlo Occupational Medicine 2009 59(4):249-254 Read the rest of this entry »

Filed under: Asthma, Occupational exposure, Skin, , ,

Allergy on N-(3-trifluoromethyl-4-nitrophenyl)phthalimide

A new allergen in the pharmaceutical industry

Jungewelter S, Aalto-Korte K.
Section of Dermatology, Finnish Institute of Occupational Health (FIOH), 
Case Report

Worker: 26 year old pharmaceutical worker, no history of atopic disease is working on the synthesis of flutaminde, an anti-androgen drug used in the treatment of prostatic cancer.

Symptoms: pruritis, erythema of face, upper thorax and neck

Timeframe: pruritis after 1 hr, erythema after 3 hrs, lasting 3 days.

Strong allergic reaction in skin prick test with N-(3-trifluoromethyl-4-nitrophenyl)phthalimide.

Occupational allergic contact dermatitis from N-(3-trifluoromethyl-4-nitrophenyl)phthalimide, an intermediate in the production of flutamide.

This allergy was not reported previously. There are several reports on cutaneus photosensitivity reactions in patients taking flutamide for prostate carcinoma.

Filed under: Skin, ,

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Annet Lenderink

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