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Risk factors associated with asthma phenotypes in dental healthcare workers†
Article first published online: 2 APR 2012
Copyright © 2012 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
American Journal of Industrial Medicine
Special Issue: Research Contributions from the United States International Training and Research in Environmental and Occupational Health Program: Part 2
Volume 56, Issue 1, pages 90–99, January 2013
How to Cite
Singh, T., Bello, B. and Jeebhay, M. F. (2013), Risk factors associated with asthma phenotypes in dental healthcare workers. Am. J. Ind. Med., 56: 90–99. doi: 10.1002/ajim.22041
- Issue published online: 20 DEC 2012
- Article first published online: 2 APR 2012
- Manuscript Accepted: 7 MAR 2012
- NIH Research (Fogarty International Center). Grant Number: 2 D43 TW00812-06
- Allergy Society of South Africa-Glaxo Smith Kline Research Award and the National Institute for Occupational Health, NHLS
- work-related asthma;
- asthma phenotypes;
- dental workers;
- risk factors;
Exposure in the dental environment can increase the risk of respiratory disease in dental healthcare workers (HCWs). This study investigated the prevalence of asthma phenotypes in dental HCWs and associated risk factors.
A cross-sectional study of 454 dental HCWs in five dental institutions in South Africa was conducted. A self-administered questionnaire elicited the health and employment history of subjects. Sera was analyzed for atopic status and latex sensitization. Pre- and post-bronchodilator spirometry was performed.
The prevalence of atopic asthma was 6.9%, non-atopic asthma 5.9% and work-exacerbated asthma (WEA) 4.0%. Atopy and work-related ocular-nasal symptoms were strong predictors of WEA (OR: 3.4; 95% CI: 1.07–10.8; OR: 6.7, 95% CI: 2.4–19.1), respectively. Regular use of personal protective equipment (PPE) was associated with a protective affect (OR: 0.23, 95% CI: 0.1–0.7) among non-atopic asthmatics, while glove use and respiratory protection was protective among atopic asthmatics (OR: 0.39, 95% CI: 0.17–0.89).
Identification of risk factors associated with specific asthma phenotypes in dental HCWs can be used to focus preventive strategies for asthmatics. Am. J. Ind. Med. 56:90–99, 2013. © 2012 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.