Format

Send to

Choose Destination
Thorax. 2017 Nov;72(11):990-997. doi: 10.1136/thoraxjnl-2016-209665. Epub 2017 Jul 7.

Occupational exposure to pesticides are associated with fixed airflow obstruction in middle-age.

Author information

1
Allergy and Lung Health Unit, Centre for Epidemiology and Biostatistics, School of Population and Global Health, The University of Melbourne, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia.
2
Murdoch Childrens Research Institute, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia.
3
Department of Epidemiology and Preventive Medicine, School of Public Health and Preventive Medicine, Monash University, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia.
4
Graduate Entry Medical School, University of Limerick, Limerick, Ireland.
5
Department of Respiratory and Sleep Medicine, Austin Hospital, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia.
6
Department of Medicine, University of Queensland, Brisbane, Queensland, Australia.
7
School of Medicine, University of Tasmania, Hobart, Tasmania, Australia.
8
Cancer Epidemiology and Intelligence Division, Cancer Council Victoria, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia.
9
Faculty of Medicine, University of New South Wales, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia.
10
Allergy Immunology and Respiratory Medicine, The Alfred Hospital, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia.
11
Gold Coast University Hospital, Southport, Queensland, Australia.
12
Bond University, Robina, Queensland, Australia.
13
Environmental Epidemiology Division, Institute for Risk Assessment Sciences, Utrecht University, Utrecht, The Netherlands.

Abstract

RATIONALE:

Population-based studies have found evidence of a relationship between occupational exposures and Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD), but these studies are limited by the use of prebronchodilator spirometry. Establishing this link using postbronchodilator is critical, because occupational exposures are a modifiable risk factor for COPD.

OBJECTIVES:

To investigate the associations between occupational exposures and fixed airflow obstruction using postbronchodilator spirometry.

METHODS:

One thousand three hundred and thirty-five participants were included from 2002 to 2008 follow-up of the Tasmanian Longitudinal Health Study (TAHS). Spirometry was performed and lifetime work history calendars were used to collect occupational history. ALOHA plus Job Exposure Matrix was used to assign occupational exposure, and defined as ever exposed and cumulative exposure unit (EU)-years. Fixed airflow obstruction was defined by postbronchodilator FEV1/FVC <0.7 and the lower limit of normal (LLN). Multinomial logistic regressions were used to investigate potential associations while controlling for possible confounders.

RESULTS:

Ever exposure to biological dust (relative risk (RR)=1.58, 95% CI 1.01 to 2.48), pesticides (RR=1.74,95% CI 1.00 to 3.07) and herbicides (RR=2.09,95% CI 1.18 to 3.70) were associated with fixed airflow obstruction. Cumulative EU-years to all pesticides (RR=1.11,95% CI 1.00 to 1.25) and herbicides (RR=1.15,95% CI 1.00 to 1.32) were also associated with fixed airflow obstruction. In addition, all pesticides exposure was consistently associated with chronic bronchitis and symptoms that are consistent with airflow obstruction. Ever exposure to mineral dust, gases/fumes and vapours, gases, dust or fumes were only associated with fixed airflow obstruction in non-asthmatics only.

CONCLUSIONS:

Pesticides and herbicides exposures were associated with fixed airflow obstruction and chronic bronchitis. Biological dust exposure was also associated with fixed airflow obstruction in non-asthmatics. Minimising occupational exposure to these agents may help to reduce the burden of COPD.

KEYWORDS:

ALOHA JEM; Airflow obstruction; Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease; Job exposure matrix; Occupational exposure; Pesticide

PMID:
28687678
DOI:
10.1136/thoraxjnl-2016-209665
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for HighWire
Loading ...
Support Center