Occupational health surveillance: pulmonary function testing and oxidative stress among photocopying workers in Pakistan
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Lahore College for Women University, Lahore, Pakistan (Department of Environmental Science)
Children’s Hospital and Institute of Child Health, Lahore, Pakistan (Neurological Department)
Houda Javed   

Lahore College for Women University, Department of Environmental Science, Jail Road 65, 54000 Lahore, Pakistan
Online publication date: 2019-05-14
Med Pr 2019;70(4):403–410
Background: The photocopying occupation contributes to various health issues in workers. Elevated levels of oxidative stress have been found to be associated with respiratory problems in occupational workers. The intention of the current research is to evaluate the association between the pulmonary function parameters, a biomarker of oxidative stress, and the photocopying occupation in Lahore, Pakistan. Material and Methods: The study was performed on a group of photocopying operators (N = 100) and a control group (N = 100). A structured questionnaire was developed to gather the demographic attributes. Lung function testing was done with the spirometer. The blood lipid peroxides level, as thiobarbituric acid reactive substances (TBARS), was assessed spectrophotometrically. Results: A statistically significant reduction was found in the pulmonary function parameters as compared to the control group. In the study group, the prevalence of respiratory symptoms, including cough (31%), sneezing (18%), wheezing (9%) and breathing issues (19%), was high as compared to the control group. A significantly higher plasma TBARS concentration was observed in the photocopying workers. A negative correlation prevailed between FVC (−0.081), FVC% predicted (−0.038) and FEV1 (−0.043), and the duration of exposure. Conclusions: The study showed that the occupational exposure could have a significant effect on the normal pulmonary function and the oxidative potential of well-being. The profound emissions in the vicinity of photocopying centers may be responsible for the variations in the pulmonary function parameters and oxidative stress. Med Pr. 2019;70(4):403–10