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Disabil Rehabil. 2002 Jun 15;24(9):455-61.

The psychological effects of exposure to mixed organic solvents on car painters.

Author information

1
Institute of Occupational Medicine and Hygiene, Otto-von-Guericke University of Magdeburg, Germany. Irina.Boeckelmann@Medizin.Uni-Magdeburg.de

Abstract

PURPOSE:

Interest in diseases of the nervous system resulting from occupational exposure to mixed organic solvents has greatly increased. The aim of our study was to identify preclinical effects of low-level chronic solvent exposure on the central nervous system in car painters by assessing their cognitive performance.

METHODS:

This psychological study involved 169 clinically healthy male volunteers (84 car painters and 85 controls) and is part of a comprehensive study investigating effects of solvent exposure. The test battery included paper-pencil tests (vocabulary test, block design test, c.i., d2 test), computer-based tests (digit span test, simple-choice reaction time test), and a questionnaire to assess the participants' mental state.

RESULTS:

Car painters with long-term exposure to solvents showed psychological deviations such as deficits in concentration, memory and reaction time compared to unexposed subjects. The significant differences between the two groups were confirmed by multivariate statistical analysis.

CONCLUSIONS:

Our study displayed psychological effects associated with long-term solvent exposure in concentrations below German threshold limit values. These findings emphasize the necessity to promote the resolute compliance with occupational safety and health regulations in affected companies.

PMID:
12097214
DOI:
10.1080/09638280110102126
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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