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Korean Journal of Epidemiology 1992;14(1): 59-69.
A study on the health status of the inhabitants exposed to cementdust.
Hae Kwan Cheong, Joung Soon Kim, Byung Soon Choi, Chung Bum Kim, Sung Il Cho, Yun Mi Song, Hyun Sul Lim
Abstract
A health impact of environmental cement dust exposure among inhabitants around a cement factory was carried out with special emphasis on finding bronchial asthma cases in this area. Questionnaire survey and physical examination were done on 437 persons in two villages located within 1km distance from the cement factory. On the basis of questionnaire survey and physical examination, 56 persons with suspicion of bronchial asthma were screened, who were further examined to establish diagnosis by physical examination, pulmonary function test and bronchodilator test. Results are as follows : 1. Inhabitants in surveyed area had high prevalence of acute and chronic diseases, particularly respiratory diseases and dermatologic diseases. 2. Respiratory symptoms complained were sputum(23.9%), cough(23.0%), dyspnea(19.1%), chest tightness(14.6%), and wheezy breath sound(13.1%). On physical examination, pterygium(29.5%), decreased breath sound(3.0%), wheezing(3.3%), and rales(2.7%) were found. 3. On diagnostic examination, 32 cases (prevalence rate 7.3%) of bronchial asthma and 10 current cases (prevalence rate 2.3%) of bronchial asthma were confirmed. Thus it is postulated that high prevalence of bronchial asthma and respiratory diseases in this area may be related to environmental exposure to the cement dust. Further study, however, such as bronchial provocation test may be necessary to establish definite conclusion on causal relationship between bronchial asthma and environmental cement dust exposure.


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