Occupational Asthma Reference

Gordon SB, Curran AD, Fishwick D, Morice AH, Howard P, Respiratory symptoms among glass bottle workers--cough and airways irritancy syndrome?, Occup Med, 1998;48:455-459,

Keywords: UK, eye, irritant, rhinitis, throat soreness, bottle washer

Known Authors

Andrew Curran, HSL, Sheffield, UK Andrew Curran

David Fishwick, Royal Hallamshire Hospital, Sheffield, UK David Fishwick

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Abstract

Glass bottle workers have been shown to experience an excess of respiratory symptoms. This work describes in detail the symptoms reported by a cohort of 69 symptomatic glass bottle workers. Symptoms, employment history and clinical investigations including radiology, spirometry and serial peak expiratory flow rate records were retrospectively analyzed from clinical records. The results showed a consistent syndrome of work-related eye, nose and throat irritation followed after a variable period by shortness of breath. The latent interval between starting work and first developing symptoms was typically 4 years (median = 4 yrs; range = 0-28). The interval preceding the development of dysponea was longer and much more variable (median = 16 yrs; range = 3-40). Spirometry was not markedly abnormal in the group but 57% of workers had abnormal serial peak expiratory flow rate charts. Workers in this industry experience upper and lower respiratory tract symptoms consistent with irritant exposure. The long-term functional significance of these symptoms should be formally investigated

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