Indian Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine   Official publication of Indian Association of  0ccupational  Health  
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   2005| May-August  | Volume 9 | Issue 2  
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Thallium toxicity: A growing concern
A Saha
May-August 2005, 9(2):53-56
This review article deals with the growing concern of the toxicity of thallium. This article describes the characteristics of thallium, its potential sources of exposure, kinetics, and toxicity on human being and diagnosis of thallium poisoning. This article also describes some episodes of thallium poisoning arising from both occupational and nonoccupational exposure.
  28,813 481 8
Distance learning courses in occupational medicine - Methods and good practice
NL Wagner, PJ Wagner, Jayachandran P
May-August 2005, 9(2):57-61
The need for training in Occupational Medicine in India is well known. The majority of company doctors cannot leave their work and join a residence program. The question which course delivery mode - residential or blended or distance education - is appropriate to teach working company doctors is therefore an urgent one. ADULT EDUCATION: Adults learners - in contrast to young students - have a lot prior experiences and knowledge which they want to use. They have tight personal schedules and are very practical and goal-oriented. They usually have a fulltime work. Adults need more guides than lecturers. Immediate use, practice by doing and discussion groups are the most powerful tools in teaching. Lecturing seems to be the most ineffective teaching method. Distance education is widely used already in teaching occupational health & safety and occupational medicine (OSH) in other countries. Almost 100% of all post­graduate teaching in occupational medicine is done by distance education in the U. K. A "blended" course model seems appropriate for Occupational Medicine teaching. It has contact phases and self-learning phases The Indian Association of Occupational Health could play a leading role in expending high quality teaching in Occupational Medicine. These activities would contribute to the Government's goals to strengthen Occupational Health in India. This article discusses distance education and online-teaching as one viable way to deliver high quality training in Occupational Medicine to working company doctors in India.
  27,057 524 4
Occupational overuse syndrome among keyboard users in Mauritius
AH Subratty, F Korumtollee
May-August 2005, 9(2):71-75
Ergonomics is a very important factor that cannot be over looked in the information technology working environment. This study was undertaken to assess reporting of occupational overuse syndrome (OOS) among keyboard users in Mauritius. A questionnaire-based survey was carried out among 362 computer users. Two hundred completed questionnaires were returned and data analyzed. The main findings from the present work showed symptoms such as eye problems and lower back, neck and shoulder pain were common among computer users. Severity of pain increased with number of hours of computer use at work. Reporting of OOS was higher among females. In conclusion, it is proposed that computer users need to be provided with an ergonomically conducive environment as well as to be educated and trained with respect to OOS. Implementation of such program(s) will go a long way towards preventing appearance of OOS symptoms among the young population currently engaged in the IT sector in Mauritius.
  14,033 381 2
Vitellogenin assay by enzyme-linked immunosorbant assay as a biomarker of endocrine disruptor chemicals pollution
M Ebrahimi
May-August 2005, 9(2):65-70
There is increasing evidence that many xenobiotic chemicals (called as endocrine disruptor chemicals, EDCs) through interfering with the endocrine system, have the capability to induce developmental and reproductive abnormalities in humans and animals. The yolk protein precursor vitellogenin (Vtg) has proved to be a simple and sensitive biomarker for assessing exposure of fish to EDCs, especially the estrogenic compounds. Work is ongoing to develop screening and testing programmes for endocrine disrupting effects of new chemicals, and in the focus of this development are the fish test species common carp ( Cyprinus carpio ). In this study, we have developed quantitative enzyme-linked immunosorbent assays (ELISA) for VTS in common carp. The working range of the ELISA was 11.25 - 2000 ng/ml (75 - 25% specific binding/maximum antibody binding [B/B0]) with a 50% B/B0 intra and interassay variation of 3.9% ( n = 10) and 12.5% ( n = 30), respectively. This ELISA is capable of detecting Vtg as low as 6 ng/ml, and can accurately detect Vtg in even 10 ml of plasma. The ELISA was applied to measurement of Vtg production by male carp ( C. carpio , Cyprinidae) fish exposure to ethynylestradiol. The results showed that the amount of Vtg produced in plasma of exposed fish increased in logarithmic order comparing to the control group and the ELISA described here could be used as an indicator of water pollution to estrogenic pollutants.
  12,632 333 4
Pattern and predictors of mortality in sandstone quarry workers
ML Mathur
May-August 2005, 9(2):80-85
Study of silicosis was conducted in 1992-1994, which included a sample of 458 sandstone quarry workers of Jodhpur. To find out the pattern and predictors of mortality among sandstone quarry workers. Houses of all workers were visited and the worker's status was recorded. Standardized mortality ratio (for all causes of death) was calculated. Cox proportional hazard model was applied to study the association of different variables with mortality. Total 97.8% workers could be followed, of whom, 10.9% had died (SMR = 1.72; 95% CI 1.23 - 2.19). The average age at the time of death of the deceased was 51.8 ± 12.5 years. Mortality was higher among silicotics (SMR = 2.54; 95% CI 1.43 - 3.66), smokers (SMR = 1.83; 95% CI 1.27 - 2.39), and those showing mixed abnormality in pulmonary function test (SMR = 2.73; 95% CI 1.24 - 4.21). In multivariate Cox proportional hazard model, restriction in spirometery (HR = 13.95; 95% CI 9.14 - 21.29), longer duration (> 15 years) of working in quarries (HR = 7.29; 95% CI 5.19 - 10.24), chronic dyspnoea (HR = 6.48; 95% CI 4.70 - 8.95), silicosis (HR = 6.03; 95% CI 4.85 - 7.51), BMI < 1.75 (HR = 3.50; 95% CI 2.78 - 4.41), and chronic chest pain (HR = 3.28; 95% CI 2.51 - 4.28) emerged as significant predictors of all cause mortality. It can be concluded that sandstone quarry workers died at a younger age. In absence of certified cause of death, these predictors suggest that silicosis, COPD, lung cancer, and tuberculosis might be underlying causes of higher mortality. This study underlines the need for adopting measures among workers for the prevention from exposure to fine dust.
  8,613 333 4
Disaster management - Issues for action
GK Kulkarni
May-August 2005, 9(2):51-52
  8,343 258 -
Sister-chromatid exchanges in anesthetists
F Jayakaran, IM Thomas
May-August 2005, 9(2):86-89
A number of reports indicate that waste anesthetic gases (AG) that are ambient in the operation theater (OT) are responsible for producing effects in anesthetists like headaches, dizziness, nausea, heart and liver diseases, cancer as well as poor obstetric history for the female staff. To evaluate the presence or absence of genotoxicity. Because sister-chromatid exchanges (SCE) are sensitive indicators of exposure to mutagens, the blood of 51 anesthetists and 51 stringently matched controls were cultured and harvested and analyzed. (1) Descriptive statistics - mean, range and standard deviation. (2) Inferential statistical procedures: (a) univariate procedures and (b) multivariate procedures (step-wise multiple regression analysis). The results showed a significantly higher level of SCE (7.68 ± 2.03/cell) in anesthetists when compared to that of controls (5.78 ± 1.23/cell), demonstrating that a genotoxic effect is present. There is a strong case for installing scavenging devices and leak-proof apparatus in the OT to lower the level of ambient AG, because the health of all OT staff is at risk.
  8,326 238 3
Health effects of occupational exposure to static magnetic field in a chloralkali plant
A Choobineh, F Amirzadeh
May-August 2005, 9(2):76-79
A cross-sectional study was conducted to determine if long-term exposure to static magnetic fields could be related to findings of medical examination. Health data was obtained for 20 workers who spent a major period of their working time in the magnetic field produced by direct current through large electric cells. The data was compared to that of control group of 21 workers. Intensity of magnetic flux density was measured in the Chloralkali plant and the TWA exposure to magnetic field was determined for each job classification. Maximum and minimum intensities were found to be 16.99 and 0.49 mT, respectively, which were well below the recommended level. Maximum TWA exposure to magnetic field was equal to 47.59 mT that was less than the acceptable level. The results of clinical examinations and blood tests revealed that there was no significant difference between the two groups. The only effects which were found to be related to exposure to the magnetic field were nervousness and fatigue. Studying a larger sample size may contribute to detect any health effects of occupational exposure to static magnetic field in industrial settings.
  8,008 231 -
Health promotion at work place - Health monitoring at work site - A logistic health appraisal
NK Chandrasekaran
May-August 2005, 9(2):62-64
This article on health appraisals at the place of work discusses various work situations, exposures, parameters to be studied and the shortcomings of some of the parameters. Elaborate information is given on many work situations and interpretations of screening tests. Different organ system affections have been dealt with reference to offending chemicals. Practical studies have been cited about the implications of biological monitoring in real-time situations.
  7,245 331 -
Dr. B. Bhar
GK Kulkarni
May-August 2005, 9(2):90-90
  4,201 169 -
Dr. J. K. Mahapatra
GK Kulkarni
May-August 2005, 9(2):90-90
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