Indian Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine   Official publication of Indian Association of  0ccupational  Health  
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   2015| May-August  | Volume 19 | Issue 2  
    Online since September 14, 2015

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Social determinants of health and oral health: An Indian perspective
Viral V Mehta, G Rajesh, Ashwini Rao, Ramya Shenoy, Mithun Pai
May-August 2015, 19(2):71-75
DOI:10.4103/0019-5278.165335  PMID:26500407
Several conventional approaches have been tried in the past to resolve health inequities in India. However, achieving Universal Health Coverage (UHC) is yet to be fully realized as the benefits have been meager. The recent concept of targeting social determinants of general and oral health in order to achieve health for all has shown positive results in the developed as well as the developing nations. Based on the framework recommended by the Commission on Social Determinants of Health, several policies have been introduced and suitably backed up with the intention of providing health care even to people living in remote sections of the society. This paper intends to highlight the rationale for social determinants approach in Indian context, its application and future recommendations for the same. It is considered as a radical approach, and adequate measures have been implemented by health systems to achieve the desired targets without delay. However, in order to achieve UHC, redistribution of the available resources and converting the "normative" needs into "felt" needs of the people is going to be an uphill task to accomplish.
  4,341 122 -
Occupation-related psychological distress among police constables of Udupi taluk, Karnataka: A cross-sectional study
Shradha Sadanand Parsekar, Mannat Mohanjeet Singh, TV Bhumika
May-August 2015, 19(2):80-83
DOI:10.4103/0019-5278.165329  PMID:26500409
Background: Police occupational stress is an extensive issue due to number of negative consequences on an individual as well as the police department which is often neglected. This study is the first of its kind in Udupi district. Aim: The present study intended to find out the prevalence of psychological distress among police constable, assess stressors, and the factors influencing it. Settings and Design: A cross-sectional study was conducted among police constables in police stations of Udupi taluk. Subjects and Methods: A total of 76 constables participated in the study, who were taken up from seven randomly selected police stations. General health questionnaire and organizational and operational police stress questionnaire were used to assess psychological distress and stressors, respectively. Statistical Analysis Used: Data were analyzed using SPSS version 15. Results were tabulated using frequency distribution and proportions for dichotomous variables and mean with a standard deviation for continuous variables. Chi-square test was performed to find the association between psychological distress and other variables. Results: One-fourth (95% confidence interval: 0.153, 0.347) of the participants reported as having high levels of psychological distress. Years of service and 28 stressful activities were significantly associated with psychological distress. Conclusion: Psychological distress among the police constables is of concern; hence some modifications such as sharing work, fixed duty hours, etc., should be done in the police department in order to avoid stress and its adverse effects. Stress management training can be given at regular intervals to improve competitiveness and enhance coping skills.
  2,909 84 -
Evaluation of occupational exposure of carpet weavers in northern province of Madhya Pradesh (India) during different seasons
Khursheed Ahmad Wani, Rejvan Khan, Mamta
May-August 2015, 19(2):110-118
DOI:10.4103/0019-5278.165331  PMID:26500414
Objectives: We investigated general working conditions in the carpet manufacturing industry and assessed the health risk factors of weavers working in this industry. Materials and Methods: Noise level, light intensity, temperature and humidity were measured with the help of sound level meter, lux meter and thermohygrometer, respectively at the workplace and the result were subjected to One Way Analysis of Variance. A pretested questionnaire was used to evaluate the health problems among different weavers working in the carpet industry. Results: Results indicated that the weavers in these units were exposed to extreme environmental conditions. The majority of these weavers were suffering from eye irritation, back pain, allergies, general weakness, hearing loss, with most workers having three to five of these health problems. Our study reported higher incidence of musculoskeletal and respiratory diseases among weavers, during different season. Conclusion: A large variation during different seasons is an indication that environmental conditions play an important role in determining the health of weavers at the workplace. Results clearly demonstrate that working conditions were not suitable for the type of work carried out by the weavers.
  2,895 65 -
Chronic pesticide exposure: Health effects among pesticide sprayers in Southern India
Philip Mathew, Arun Jose, Reginald George Alex, Venkata Raghava Mohan
May-August 2015, 19(2):95-101
DOI:10.4103/0019-5278.165334  PMID:26500412
Background: Occupational health has never been a priority for policy makers in India, despite 63% of the Indian population being in the economically productive age group. Objectives: The study was designed to find out the morbidity as a result of long-term exposure to pesticides among professional pesticide sprayers in a rural block in Tamil Nadu. Subjects and Methods: A cross-sectional study was done in Kaniyambadi block of Vellore district, Tamil Nadu, during July to October 2013. A total of 70 professional pesticide sprayers and 66 people engaged in other occupations were enrolled into the study. The participants were administered a standardized questionnaire apart from measuring pulmonary function and peripheral sensations. Venous blood samples were collected for measuring serum cholinesterase. Results: The pesticide sprayers had higher prevalence of breathlessness on activities of daily living (odds ratio [OR]: 3.14, 95% confidence interval [CI]: 1.22–8.07), chronic cough/phlegm (OR: 3.53, 95% CI: 1.09–11.46), symptoms of peripheral sensory neuropathy (OR: 6.66, 95% CI: 2.53–17.51) and recurrent abdominal pain (OR: 3.05, 95% CI: 1.03–9.01), when compared to people engaged in other occupations. Pesticide sprayers also had significantly lower mean peak expiratory low rates and poor peripheral sensations. The serum cholinesterase levels were not statistically different between the groups. Conclusion: The pesticide sprayers had a higher morbidity when compared to people engaged in other occupations, and further research is needed to find out methods to prevent the same. Serum cholinesterase may not be a good marker for quantifying exposure to pesticide among sprayers, during a spraying season.
  2,712 103 -
Situational analysis of industrial hygienists in India
Rajnarayan R Tiwari, Anjali Sharma, Sanjay P Zodpey, Shruti Patel
May-August 2015, 19(2):90-94
DOI:10.4103/0019-5278.165333  PMID:26500411
Background: Industrial growth in India has resulted in increased employment opportunities thereby inflating the size of the workforce engaged in both organized and unorganized sectors. This workforce is exposed to various occupational factors at workplace and hence is susceptible to occupational diseases, the control of which requires trained occupational health manpower. Methods: The present study was undertaken to map the institutions offering courses to develop industrial hygienist in India, estimate the requirement of such occupational health manpower and to design competencies and curriculum for such a course. Results: Though there are no norms for the industrial hygienist in the Indian Factories Act, on assumption on the basis of norms provided for Safety Officer, it is estimated that for 26.92 million workforce engaged in organized sector, a total of 5407 Industrial hygienists will be required. Thus there is an estimated deficit of 51% for Industrial hygienist based on current ratio of employment. However on supply side there are only three institutes offering specialized courses on industrial hygiene out of which only one is full time residential course while rest two are offered through distance learning mode. Conclusions: Therefore, there is a vital need for the development of industrial hygienist not only in quantity but also in quality so that the workers in industries and communities lead socially and environmentally productive lives.
  2,681 71 -
Metabolic syndrome in different sub occupations among mine workers
V Dhatrak Sarang, S Nandi Subroto, L Dhumne Umesh
May-August 2015, 19(2):76-79
DOI:10.4103/0019-5278.165330  PMID:26500408
Introduction: Metabolic syndrome (MS) is a condition described by the group of risk factors associated with obesity that raise the risk of cardiovascular disease and type 2 diabetes. MS has an increasing trend in developing countries with change of diet and lifestyle. Many studies in India have reported high prevalence of MS among general population however there is little information available about the same in working population. Material and Methods: The present study was conducted among 281 mine employees from an organized mining company from Southern India. The workers were classified into different sub occupational groups according to ISCO-88. WHO Criteria was used for the diagnosis of MS. Results: The overall prevalence of MS in mine employees was about 17%. Among different sub occupations, the highest was observed in professional group of 52.9% and lowest in elementary occupations of 9.4%. In other sub occupational groups it was 23.3% in clerical, 18.9% in trade workers, 17.5% in technicians and 15.5% in machine operators. Occurrence of MS when compared in different sub occupations was statistically significant (P =<0.001). Further MS was found to be 6.4% in the 18-30 years of age group which significantly increased to 40.3% in the 51-60 years age group suggesting direct relation of MS with increase in age. Discussion: Mining being physical demanding occupation prevalence of MS is assumed to be lower than the general population; however it was observed that the prevalence is in similar line to that of general population with the prevalence ranging from 9.4% to 52.9% among different sub occupations. Hence it is concluded that there is need of health education and promotion among the mine workers.
  2,495 92 -
Neopterin: A candidate biomarker for the early assessment of toxicity of aluminum among bauxite dust exposed mine workers
Shubhangi K Pingle, Lucky R Thakkar, Aruna A Jawade, Rajani G Tumane, Ruchika K Jain, Pravin N Soni
May-August 2015, 19(2):102-109
DOI:10.4103/0019-5278.165332  PMID:26500413
Introduction: Bauxite ore is a major source of aluminum (Al) which contains approximately 35–60% Al by weight. Occupational and environmental bauxite dust exposure may cause toxicity by interaction with human biological systems resulting in oxidative stress (OS) and cell death. A neopterin derivative as an antioxidant is able to modulate cytotoxicity by the induction of OS. Materials and Methods: A total of 273 subjects were selected for blood collection from three different major Al producing bauxite mines and were categorized into three groups as experimental (Exp) (n = 150), experimental controls (ExC) (n = 73) and control (Con) (n = 50). Whole blood and serum samples were used for measurement of Al, neopterin, urea and creatinine values. Statistical analysis was performed using R-2.15.1 programming language. Results and Discussion: The result showed that age, body mass index and the behavioral habits, that is, smoking, tobacco and alcohol consumption have possible effects on neopterin level. Serum neopterin levels were found to be significantly higher (P <0.0001) in the experimental group as compared to other groups. Significantly positive correlation (P < 0.0001) was observed between neopterin and creatinine. It was also observed that neopterin level increases as the duration of exposure increases. Conclusion: On the basis of findings it was concluded that exposure to bauxite dust (even at low levels of Al) changes biochemical profile leading to high levels of serum neopterin. Levels of serum neopterin in workers exposed to bauxite dust were probably examined for the 1st time in India. The outcome of this study suggested that serum neopterin may be used as potential biomarker for early detection of health risks associated with bauxite dust exposed population.
  2,441 50 -
Need for travel health services in India
Ganesh K Kulkarni
May-August 2015, 19(2):69-70
DOI:10.4103/0019-5278.165328  PMID:26500406
  2,380 65 -
Empirical estimation of the grades of hearing impairment among industrial workers based on new artificial neural networks and classical regression methods
Maryam Farhadian, Mohsen Aliabadi, Ebrahim Darvishi
May-August 2015, 19(2):84-89
DOI:10.4103/0019-5278.165337  PMID:26500410
Background: Prediction models are used in a variety of medical domains, and they are frequently built from experience which constitutes data acquired from actual cases. This study aimed to analyze the potential of artificial neural networks and logistic regression techniques for estimation of hearing impairment among industrial workers. Materials and Methods: A total of 210 workers employed in a steel factory (in West of Iran) were selected, and their occupational exposure histories were analyzed. The hearing loss thresholds of the studied workers were determined using a calibrated audiometer. The personal noise exposures were also measured using a noise dosimeter in the workstations. Data obtained from five variables, which can influence the hearing loss, were used as input features, and the hearing loss thresholds were considered as target feature of the prediction methods. Multilayer feedforward neural networks and logistic regression were developed using MATLAB R2011a software. Results: Based on the World Health Organization classification for the grades of hearing loss, 74.2% of the studied workers have normal hearing thresholds, 23.4% have slight hearing loss, and 2.4% have moderate hearing loss. The accuracy and kappa coefficient of the best developed neural networks for prediction of the grades of hearing loss were 88.6 and 66.30, respectively. The accuracy and kappa coefficient of the logistic regression were also 84.28 and 51.30, respectively. Conclusion: Neural networks could provide more accurate predictions of the hearing loss than logistic regression. The prediction method can provide reliable and comprehensible information for occupational health and medicine experts.
  2,290 43 -
Successful treatment of frostbite with hyperbaric oxygen treatment
Deepak A Dwivedi, Srinivasa Alasinga, Sanjay Singhal, Vineet Kumar Malhotra, Atul Kotwal
May-August 2015, 19(2):121-122
DOI:10.4103/0019-5278.165336  PMID:26500416
  2,285 36 -
Ascertaining the standard of journal using quality indices
Saurabh RamBihariLal Shrivastava, Prateek Saurabh Shrivastava, Jegadeesh Ramasamy
May-August 2015, 19(2):119-120
DOI:10.4103/0019-5278.165327  PMID:26500415
In the modern era, most of the researchers want to share their work on a global platform so that they not only receive the due recognition but even their findings can be utilized by other professionals working in the same arena. In order to achieve this, the most common approach is to publish the research findings in an appropriate journal. However, the indicators which eventually determine the overall quality of a journal are variable and there is a great need that the contributors should understand the meaning and scope of each of these indicators. In conclusion, in order to establish the journal's quality, the researchers should obtain the information about the various indices from the journals' website or editorial board and then only submit their research work for publishing.
  2,015 43 -