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Korean Journal of Preventive Medicine 1995;28(4): 875-884.
Study on the lead exposure of workers in a litharge making industry.
Sang Bok Lim, Jung Kyu Lim, Sung Soo Lee, Kyu Dong Ahn, Byung Kook Lee
In order to investigate the level of lead exposure of workers in litharge making industry and to evaluate how lead exposure, personal habit such as smoking and drinking affect the prevalence of lead related symptoms and other study variables, we investigate 114 workers(24 office workers and 90 lead exposed workers) in a litharge making industry. Study variables chosen were blood lead(PbB), zinc protoporphyrin in whole blood(ZPP), Hemoglobin(Hb), hematocrit (Hct), SGOT and SGPT. symptom questionnaires which had 15 lead exposure related symptoms were provided to all workers and filled up by themselves and reconfirmed by physician. The results obtained were as follows; 1. The mean value of PbB, ZPP and SGOT in lead exposed group were higher than those of non-exposed group, and there were no differences of means in other study variables. 2. The smoking and drinking rate of study subjects were 65.8% and 71.0% as a whole. Smoking rates were lower in non-exposed group than exposed group, but drinking rate were not. 3. There were no differences of mean values of study variables between smoker and non-smoker in non-exposed and exposed group, but there was a difference of mean value of SGOT between drinker and non-drinker in lead exposed group. 4. while the symptom prevalence of lead exposed group were higher in neuromuscular category than non-exposed group, those of non-exposed group were higher or same with exposed group in gastrointestinal and general symptom category. 5. The symptom prevalence of smoker were higher than non-smoker regardless of exposure. 6. The symptom prevalence of drinker were only higher in gastrointestinal symptom category than non-drinker. 7. In multiple stepwise regression analysis of lead related symptoms as dependent variable and blood lead, smoking habit, drinking habit and work duration as independent variables, drinking habit contributed to the gastrointestinal symptom category, whereas blood lead and smoking contributed to the neuromuscular symptom category. For the total symptoms work duration and smoking habit contributed significantly.
Key words: Lead exposure; Drinking; smoking; Lead related symptoms
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