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Year : 2018  |  Volume : 22  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 5-10

Respiratory morbidity among rice mill workers in an urban area of Burdwan District, West Bengal: A cross-sectional study

1 Department of Community Medicine, Burdwan Medical College, Burdwan, West Bengal, India
2 Department of Respiratory Medicine, Burdwan Medical College, Burdwan, West Bengal, India

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Somnath Naskar
41 Shibpur Road, Shibpur, Howrah - 711 102, West Bengal
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/ijoem.IJOEM_20_18

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Background: Rice mill workers constitute a special group from the perspective of occupational health. Unprotected dust exposure among them adversely affects their respiratory health, which needs to be evaluated. Adequate evidence is still lacking in many parts of India including West Bengal. Burdwan is one of the main rice-producing districts in the state with abundant rice mills. Aim: The aim of the study was to find out the prevalence and pattern of respiratory morbidity and associated background characteristics of rice mill workers. Settings and Design: A descriptive cross-sectional study was conducted at Burdwan municipality area during July–December 2016. Materials and Methods: Considering 44.2% prevalence, 95% confidence interval, 15% allowable error, 10% non-response, a sample of 252 directly engaged rice mill workers were selected through multistage random sampling. With prior consent, the subjects were interviewed, clinically examined, and underwent spirometry; relevant records were also reviewed using a pre-designed schedule. Any abnormal spirometry finding was considered as respiratory morbidity. Ethical approval was obtained from institutional ethics committee. Statistical Analysis: Data were analyzed using SPSS version 20. Chi-square test and multiple logistic regression were applied. Results: Prevalence of respiratory morbidity was 40.73% with obstructive and restrictive respiratory morbidity being 24.60% and 16.13%, respectively. Non-use of any protective measure, duration (years) of working in rice mill and average daily working hours were significant predictors of respiratory morbidity. Conclusion: Respiratory morbidity is quite high in the area. Proper health education and provision of personal protective equipments need to be provided.


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