Original Article
Korean J Prev Med. 1997; 30(1): 145-156.
Phototoxic Dermatosis among Coal-tar Pitch Workers.
Cheol Jung, Hyun Sul Lim, Doo Hie Kim, and Yeol Oh Sung
1Department of Preventive Medicine, College of Medicine, Doggguk University, Korea.
2Department of Dermatology, College of Medicine, Doggguk University, Korea.
Interview survey and dermatological examination have been performed to investigate the health problems of workers continuously exposed to coal-tar pitch. The phototoxicity of coal-tar pitch was confirmed by the photopatch tests for six healthy adults. The main results are followings; 1. There was no special history of allergic diseases in both the exposed and non-exposed group. 2. The frequency of the phototoxic dermatosis and the coal-tar acne in the exposed group was significantly greater(p<0.05) than that of the control group. In the exposed group, the phototoxic dermatosis and the coal-tar acne were observed in nine workers(90%) and seven workers(70%), respectively. However, those disease were not observed in the control group. 3. Five results(83%) were positive to the photopatch test for coal-tar pitch 48 hours after UVA irradiation. But the lesion was subsiding 72 hours after UVA irradiation. 4. Malignant cancers were not reported among workers ever exposed to coal-tar pitch. In conclusion, it appears that workers exposed to coal-tar pitch have high risks of phototoxic dermatosis and coal-tar acne. A health policy should be provided to prevent phototoxic dermatosis among coal-tar pitch workers. More studies are required to determine malignancy.
Keywords : coal-tar pitch;phototoxicity;coal-tar acne;photopatch test