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HOME > Korean J Prev Med > Volume 29(3); 1996 > Article
Original Article A Study on the Establishment of Management Methods about Occupational Dermatoses.
Hyun Sul Lim, Hae Kwan Cheong, Byung Soon Choi, Ji Yong Kim, Yeol Oh Sung, Yang Ho Kim
Journal of Preventive Medicine and Public Health 1996;29(3):617-638
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Occupational dermatosis is one of the most prevalent occupational disorders. However, the extent of the occupational dermatoses including incidences and prevalencies of each disease entity, and etiologic materials are not yet well stated in Korea. Authors reviewed the literatures on the statistic data and reports on the occupational dermatoses, and surveyed on the occupational dermatoses in two factories, and surveyed the physicians responsible to the occupational dermatoses with formed questionnaire. The results are as follows; 1. Among medical journals published since 1964, there were 31 articles on the occupational dermatoses. Of 31 articles, 18 were case reports and all others were review articles. Of 18 case reports, 9 were epidemiologic survey. The Workers' Periodic Health Examinations revealed that prevalence of the occupational dermatoses was highest(4.36 per 10,000 workers) in 1974, but number of the cases reported were decreased sharply since 1978 with some tendency to increase since 1987. There were 2,240 reported cases of occupational dermatoses between 1966 and 1992, which is 1.90% of all the reported occupational diseases. Skin infection and injuries due to chemicals were most frequent and there were 6 cases of skin cancer. 2. In an epidemiological survey on the dermatoses among 995 workers in a metal product manufacturing factory and 225 workers with acne, 130 workers with scar, 123 workers with deformity of toe nails. Scars, photosensitivity dermatitis, deformity of finger and toe nails, and acne were more prevalent in the metal product manufacturing factory(p<0.05). In the metal product manufacturing factory, workers treating organic solvents and oils had more dermatoses than those without treating the materials(p<0.05). On the skin patch performed on 16 workers in the metal product manufacturing factory, there were 8 cases of irritation dermatitis and 5 cases of contact dermatitis. Prevalence of contact dermatitis in the metal product manufacturing factory was 1.3%. 3. On the questionnaire survey, 34 dermatologists, 29 doctors of preventive medicine, and 22 family physician replied. The proportion of occupational etiology among all dermatoses assumed by the physicians were below 9%, and the most important occupational dermatosis in Korea was contact dermatitis. Main etiologic materials related to the occupational dermatosis were organic solvent, acid and alkali, and metals. The reason for the scarcity of report of occupational dermatoses were difficulty in diagnosis and physician's ignorance of the occupational etiology. They replied that to prevent the occupational dermatosis in the workplace, the use of protective devices was most important, and development of diagnostic criteria on the occupational dermatoses is urgent. Above results shows us that there is many workers with occupational dermatoses, but they are mostly unreported. Measures to prevent and manage the occupational dermatoses are not satisfactory at present. Hence, authors suggest measures for the precises diagnosis, report and prevention of the occupational dermatoses. a. Dernatikigustm orevebtuve physician, and industrial hygienist should work as a team to examine the high risk group and establish the preventive measures. b. Disease entities, diagnostic criteria of occupational dermatoses should be listed, criteria for the compensation and job fitting at recruitment should be established, and manual for the proper treatment and effective prevention of each occupational dermatosis should be developed. c. Patch test antigens against each occupational category should be developed and it should be available to any physicians responsible. d. To facilitate the diagnosis of occupational dermatoses by the doctors responsible for the Workers' Periodic Health Examination, development of standardized questionnaire, education on the techniques of the patch test, and cooperation with the dermatologist in diagnosis of occupational dermatoses is essential.

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