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Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health, Volume 10, Issue 4 (April 2013), Pages 1152-1646

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Open AccessArticle Toxic Emissions from a Military Test Site in the Territory of Sardinia, Italy
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2013, 10(4), 1631-1646; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph10041631
Received: 12 February 2013 / Revised: 10 April 2013 / Accepted: 15 April 2013 / Published: 19 April 2013
Cited by 3 | PDF Full-text (524 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
This work assesses the environmental impact from chemical emissions due to military tests and routine activities in the area occupied by the Italian Inter-force Test Range (PISQ), located at Salto di Quirra, Sardinia, Italy. After reviewing the military activities carried out at PISQ,
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This work assesses the environmental impact from chemical emissions due to military tests and routine activities in the area occupied by the Italian Inter-force Test Range (PISQ), located at Salto di Quirra, Sardinia, Italy. After reviewing the military activities carried out at PISQ, such as rocket launching, blasting and armament destruction, projectile and mortar fire impact, the associated pollution is evaluated. Chemical analyses were performed by means of Scanning Electronic Microscopy and Energy Dispersion Spectrometry on biotic and abiotic matrices. Residues of Rb, Tl, W, Ti and Al were found in matrices collected in the PISQ areas and environs. A review of experimental data on air, water, soil, milk, forage and animal tissues obtained by various Public Agencies of Sardinia proved that toxic element residues often exceeded the legal limits. PM10 and PM2.5 air concentrations also exceeded the legal limits after military blasting. Cd and Pb contents in the liver and kidneys of sheep living in farms at PISQ and in control farms that were located more than 20 km away from PISQ were higher than the legal limits. This work was performed to investigate concentration of xenobiotics in ecosystems emitted from PISQ activities. This assessment could be useful to focus future epidemiological studies carried out in PISQ and its neighbouring areas. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Environmental Geochemistry and Health)
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Open AccessArticle Integrated Environmental Risk Assessment and Whole-Process Management System in Chemical Industry Parks
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2013, 10(4), 1609-1630; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph10041609
Received: 7 January 2013 / Revised: 7 April 2013 / Accepted: 15 April 2013 / Published: 19 April 2013
Cited by 13 | PDF Full-text (890 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Chemical industry parks in China are considered high-risk areas because they present numerous risks that can damage the environment, such as pollution incidents. In order to identify the environmental risks and the principal risk factors in these areas, we have developed a simple
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Chemical industry parks in China are considered high-risk areas because they present numerous risks that can damage the environment, such as pollution incidents. In order to identify the environmental risks and the principal risk factors in these areas, we have developed a simple physical model of a regional environmental risk field (ERF) using existing dispersal patterns and migration models. The regional ERF zoning was also conducted and a reference value for diagnostic methods was developed to determine risk-acceptable, risk-warning, and risk-mitigation zones, which can provide a risk source layout for chemical industry parks. In accordance with the environmental risk control requirements, this study focused on the three stages of control and management of environmental risk and established an environmental risk management system including risk source identification and assessment, environmental safety planning, early risk warning, emergency management, assessment of environmental effects, and environmental remediation of pollution accidents. By using this model, the environmental risks in Tianjin Binhai New Area, the largest chemical industry park in China, were assessed and the environmental risk zoning map was drawn, which suggested the existence of many unacceptable environmental risks in this area. Thus, relevant suggestions have been proposed from the perspective of the adjustment of risk source layout, intensified management of environmental risk control and so on. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Environmental Geochemistry and Health)
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Open AccessArticle Monoclonal Antibody-Based Sandwich ELISA for the Detection of Staphylococcal Enterotoxin A
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2013, 10(4), 1598-1608; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph10041598
Received: 19 March 2013 / Revised: 26 March 2013 / Accepted: 15 April 2013 / Published: 19 April 2013
Cited by 30 | PDF Full-text (230 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
A sensitive and specific monoclonal antibody-based sandwich enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) was established and validated for the detection of staphylococcal enterotoxin A (SEA). After routine fusion and selection, 10 monoclonal antibodies showed high affinity for SEA. An optimal pair for sandwich ELISA was
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A sensitive and specific monoclonal antibody-based sandwich enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) was established and validated for the detection of staphylococcal enterotoxin A (SEA). After routine fusion and selection, 10 monoclonal antibodies showed high affinity for SEA. An optimal pair for sandwich ELISA was selected by pairwise interaction analysis. After optimization, the limit of detection (LOD) and linear dynamic range of the method were established, and were found to be 0.0282 ng/mL and 0.06–2 ng/mL, respectively. The recovery in pure milk ranged from 82.67% to 111.95% and the intra- and inter-assay coefficients of variation ranged from 3.16% to 6.05% and from 5.16% to 10.79%, respectively. Cross-reactivity with staphylococcal enterotoxin B (SEB), staphylococcal enterotoxin C (SEC), staphylococcal enterotoxin D (SED), and staphylococcal enterotoxin E (SEE) in this method were insignificant. These results indicate that the sandwich ELISA method developed in our study is effective for routine identification of SEA in food samples. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Food Safety and Public Health)
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Open AccessArticle Bacterial Contamination on Household Toys and Association with Water, Sanitation and Hygiene Conditions in Honduras
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2013, 10(4), 1586-1597; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph10041586
Received: 25 February 2013 / Revised: 27 March 2013 / Accepted: 3 April 2013 / Published: 18 April 2013
Cited by 10 | PDF Full-text (216 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
There is growing evidence that household water treatment interventions improve microbiological water quality and reduce diarrheal disease risk. Few studies have examined, however, the impact of water treatment interventions on household-level hygiene and sanitation. This study examined the association of four water and
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There is growing evidence that household water treatment interventions improve microbiological water quality and reduce diarrheal disease risk. Few studies have examined, however, the impact of water treatment interventions on household-level hygiene and sanitation. This study examined the association of four water and sanitation conditions (access to latrines, improved sanitation, improved water and the plastic biosand filter) on the levels of total coliforms and E. coli on existing and introduced toys during an on-going randomized controlled trial of the plastic biosand filter (plastic BSF). The following conditions were associated with decreased bacterial contamination on children’s toys: access to a latrine, access to improved sanitation and access to the plastic BSF. Overall, compared to existing toys, introduced toys had significantly lower levels of both E. coli and total coliforms. Results suggest that levels of fecal indicator bacteria contamination on children’s toys may be associated with access to improved water and sanitation conditions in the home. In addition, the fecal indicator bacteria levels on toys probably vary with duration in the household. Additional information on how these toys become contaminated is needed to determine the usefulness of toys as indicators or sentinels of water, sanitation and hygiene conditions, behaviors and risks. Full article
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Open AccessCommunication Evaluation of the HACCP System in a University Canteen: Microbiological Monitoring and Internal Auditing as Verification Tools
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2013, 10(4), 1572-1585; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph10041572
Received: 13 March 2013 / Revised: 3 April 2013 / Accepted: 3 April 2013 / Published: 17 April 2013
Cited by 13 | PDF Full-text (355 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Food safety is essential in mass catering. In Europe, Regulation (EC) No. 852/2004 requires food business operators to put in place, implement and maintain permanent procedures based on Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point (HACCP) principles. Each HACCP plan is specifically implemented for
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Food safety is essential in mass catering. In Europe, Regulation (EC) No. 852/2004 requires food business operators to put in place, implement and maintain permanent procedures based on Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point (HACCP) principles. Each HACCP plan is specifically implemented for the processing plant and processing methods and requires a systematic collection of data on the incidence, elimination, prevention, and reduction of risks. In this five-year-study, the effectiveness of the HACCP plan of a University canteen was verified through periodic internal auditing and microbiological monitoring of meals, small equipment, cooking tools, working surfaces, as well as hands and white coats of the canteen staff. The data obtained revealed no safety risks for the consumers, since Escherichia coli, Salmonella spp. and Listeria monocytogenes were never detected; however, a quite discontinuous microbiological quality of meals was revealed. The fluctuations in the microbial loads of mesophilic aerobes, coliforms, Staphylococcus aureus, Bacillus cereus, and sulphite-reducing clostridia were mainly ascribed to inadequate handling or processing procedures, thus suggesting the need for an enhancement of staff training activities and for a reorganization of tasks. Due to the wide variety of the fields covered by internal auditing, the full conformance to all the requirements was never achieved, though high scores, determined by assigning one point to each answer which matched with the requirements, were achieved in all the years. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Stages of Change, Smoking Behaviour and Readiness to Quit in a Large Sample of Indigenous Australians Living in Eight Remote North Queensland Communities
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2013, 10(4), 1562-1571; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph10041562
Received: 6 February 2013 / Revised: 3 April 2013 / Accepted: 3 April 2013 / Published: 16 April 2013
Cited by 11 | PDF Full-text (202 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Tobacco smoking is a major health issue for Indigenous Australians, however there are few interventions with demonstrated efficacy in this population. The Transtheoretical Model may provide a useful framework for describing smoking behaviour and assessing readiness to quit, with the aim of developing
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Tobacco smoking is a major health issue for Indigenous Australians, however there are few interventions with demonstrated efficacy in this population. The Transtheoretical Model may provide a useful framework for describing smoking behaviour and assessing readiness to quit, with the aim of developing better interventions. Interviews were conducted with 593 Indigenous Australians in eight rural and remote communities in north Queensland, to examine stages of change and smoking behaviour. Among current smokers, 39.6% and 43.4% were in Precontemplation and Contemplation stages respectively. A further 13.9% were making preparations to quit (Preparation) whilst only 3.2% said they were actively trying to quit (Action). When analysed by stage of change, the pattern of smoking-related behaviours conformed to the results of past research using the model. Importantly however, distribution of individuals across the stages opposes those observed in investigations of smoking behaviour in non-Indigenous Australian populations. The Transtheoretical Model can be used to meaningfully classify Indigenous smokers in remote north Queensland according to stages along the behaviour change continuum. Importantly, in this large sample across eight communities, most Indigenous smokers were not making preparations to change their smoking behaviour. This suggests that interventions should focus on promoting movement toward the Preparation and Action stages of change. Full article
Open AccessArticle Prevalence of Fetal Alcohol Syndrome and Maternal Characteristics in a Sample of Schoolchildren from a Rural Province of Croatia
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2013, 10(4), 1547-1561; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph10041547
Received: 3 March 2013 / Revised: 1 April 2013 / Accepted: 9 April 2013 / Published: 16 April 2013
Cited by 15 | PDF Full-text (237 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Fetal alcohol syndrome (FAS) is a congenital syndrome caused by maternal alcohol consumption during pregnancy and is entirely preventable by abstinence from alcohol drinking during this time. Little is known about the prevalence of FAS and maternal alcohol consumption during pregnancy in Western
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Fetal alcohol syndrome (FAS) is a congenital syndrome caused by maternal alcohol consumption during pregnancy and is entirely preventable by abstinence from alcohol drinking during this time. Little is known about the prevalence of FAS and maternal alcohol consumption during pregnancy in Western countries. We present the results of FAS/partial fetal alcohol syndrome (PFAS) prevalence study and maternal characteristics in a sample of schoolchildren from a rural province of Croatia. This study involved seven elementary schools with 1,110 enrolled children attending 1st to 4th grade and their mothers. We used an active case ascertainment method with passive parental consent and Clarified IOM criteria. The investigation protocol involved maternal data collection and clinical examination of children. Out of 1,110 mothers, 917 (82.6%) answered the questionnaire. Alcohol exposure during pregnancy was admitted by 11.5%, regular drinking by 4.0% and binge drinking by 1.4% of questioned mothers. Clinical examination involved 824 (74.2%) schoolchildren and disclosed 14 (1.7%) with clinical signs of FAS and 41 (5.0%) of PFAS. The observed FAS prevalence, based on 74.2% participation rate, was 16.9, PFAS 49.7 and combined prevalence was 66.7/1,000 examined schoolchildren. This is the first FAS prevalence study based on active ascertainment among schoolchildren and pregnancy alcohol drinking analysis performed in a rural community of Croatia and Europe. High prevalence of FAS/PFAS and pregnancy alcohol consumption observed in this study revealed that FAS is serious health problem in rural regions as well as a need to develop future studies and preventive measures for pregnancy alcohol drinking and FASD. Full article
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Open AccessReview Arsenic-Induced Genotoxicity and Genetic Susceptibility to Arsenic-Related Pathologies
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2013, 10(4), 1527-1546; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph10041527
Received: 25 February 2013 / Revised: 22 March 2013 / Accepted: 3 April 2013 / Published: 12 April 2013
Cited by 36 | PDF Full-text (294 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
The arsenic (As) exposure represents an important problem in many parts of the World. Indeed, it is estimated that over 100 million individuals are exposed to arsenic, mainly through a contamination of groundwaters.Chronic exposure to As is associated with adverse effects on
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The arsenic (As) exposure represents an important problem in many parts of the World. Indeed, it is estimated that over 100 million individuals are exposed to arsenic, mainly through a contamination of groundwaters. Chronic exposure to As is associated with adverse effects on human health such as cancers, cardiovascular diseases, neurological diseases and the rate of morbidity and mortality in populations exposed is alarming. The purpose of this review is to summarize the genotoxic effects of As in the cells as well as to discuss the importance of signaling and repair of arsenic-induced DNA damage. The current knowledge of specific polymorphisms in candidate genes that confer susceptibility to arsenic exposure is also reviewed. We also discuss the perspectives offered by the determination of biological markers of early effect on health, incorporating genetic polymorphisms, with biomarkers for exposure to better evaluate exposure-response clinical relationships as well as to develop novel preventative strategies for arsenic- health effects. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Higher Mosquito Production in Low-Income Neighborhoods of Baltimore and Washington, DC: Understanding Ecological Drivers and Mosquito-Borne Disease Risk in Temperate Cities
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2013, 10(4), 1505-1526; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph10041505
Received: 8 February 2013 / Revised: 20 March 2013 / Accepted: 3 April 2013 / Published: 12 April 2013
Cited by 24 | PDF Full-text (348 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Mosquito-vectored pathogens are responsible for devastating human diseases and are (re)emerging in many urban environments. Effective mosquito control in urban landscapes relies on improved understanding of the complex interactions between the ecological and social factors that define where mosquito populations can grow. We
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Mosquito-vectored pathogens are responsible for devastating human diseases and are (re)emerging in many urban environments. Effective mosquito control in urban landscapes relies on improved understanding of the complex interactions between the ecological and social factors that define where mosquito populations can grow. We compared the density of mosquito habitat and pupae production across economically varying neighborhoods in two temperate U.S. cities (Baltimore, MD and Washington, DC). Seven species of mosquito larvae were recorded. The invasive Aedes albopictus was the only species found in all neighborhoods. Culex pipiens, a primary vector of West Nile virus (WNV), was most abundant in Baltimore, which also had more tire habitats. Both Culex and Aedes pupae were more likely to be sampled in neighborhoods categorized as being below median income level in each city and Aedes pupae density was also greater in container habitats found in these lower income neighborhoods. We infer that lower income residents may experience greater exposure to potential disease vectors and Baltimore residents specifically, were at greater risk of exposure to the predominant WNV vector. However, we also found that resident-reported mosquito nuisance was not correlated with our measured risk index, indicating a potentially important mismatch between motivation needed to engage participation in control efforts and the relative importance of control among neighborhoods. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Environmental Determinants of Infectious Disease Transmission)
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Open AccessArticle Sick Building Syndrome by Indoor Air Pollution in Dalian, China
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2013, 10(4), 1489-1504; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph10041489
Received: 10 February 2013 / Revised: 28 March 2013 / Accepted: 3 April 2013 / Published: 11 April 2013
Cited by 27 | PDF Full-text (250 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
This study assessed subjective symptoms related to indoor concentrations of chemicals among residents in a housing estate in Dalian, China, where indoor air pollution by interior decoration materials has recently become a major health problem. Fifty-nine males and 50 females were surveyed for
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This study assessed subjective symptoms related to indoor concentrations of chemicals among residents in a housing estate in Dalian, China, where indoor air pollution by interior decoration materials has recently become a major health problem. Fifty-nine males and 50 females were surveyed for their symptoms related to sick building syndrome. Formaldehyde (HCHO), NO2, and volatile organic compounds (VOCs) in their dwellings were collected using a diffusion sampler and measured by GC/MS. For residents with one or more symptoms in the past, HCHO, butanol or 1,2-dichloroethane concentrations were significantly greater in their bedrooms or kitchens compared with those of subjects without previous symptoms. For residents with one or more symptoms at the time of the study, 1,1,1-trichloroethane, xylene, butanol, methyl isobutyl ketone, and styrene concentrations in their bedrooms or kitchens were significantly greater compared with those of residents without symptoms. HCHO, NO2, and VOCs were detected in all rooms, but their levels were lower than the guideline values except for HCHO in two rooms. Chemical substances from interior decoration materials at indoor air levels lower than their guideline values might have affected the health status of residents. Full article
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Open AccessArticle A First Approach to Differences in Continuity of Care Perceived by Immigrants and Natives in the Catalan Public Healthcare System
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2013, 10(4), 1474-1488; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph10041474
Received: 15 February 2013 / Revised: 11 March 2013 / Accepted: 27 March 2013 / Published: 9 April 2013
Cited by 6 | PDF Full-text (239 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Objective: To compare immigrants’ and natives’ perceptions of relational, managerial and informational continuity of care and to explore the influence of the length of stay on immigrants’ perceptions of continuity. Methods: Cross-sectional study based on a survey of a random sample
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Objective: To compare immigrants’ and natives’ perceptions of relational, managerial and informational continuity of care and to explore the influence of the length of stay on immigrants’ perceptions of continuity. Methods: Cross-sectional study based on a survey of a random sample of 1,500 patients, of which 22% (331) were immigrants. The study area was made up by three healthcare areas of the Catalan healthcare system. To collect data, the CCAENA questionnaire was applied. Multivariate logistic regression models were conducted. Results: Like natives, immigrants perceive high levels of managerial continuity (88.5%) and relational continuity with primary and secondary care physicians (86.7 and 81.8%), and lower levels of informational continuity (59.1%). There were no statistically significant differences in managerial and informational continuity between immigrants and natives. However, immigrants perceive a worse relational continuity with primary care physicians in terms of trust, communication and clinical responsibility. Conversely, immigrants perceive higher relational continuity with secondary care physicians in terms of effective communication and clinical responsibility. Discussion: Similar managerial and informational continuity perceptions seem to point towards a similar treatment of patients, regardless of their immigrant status. However, differences in relational continuity highlight the need for improvements in professionals’ skills in treating immigrants’ patients. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Migrant Health 2012)
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Open AccessArticle Surveillance and Correlation of Antibiotic Consumption and Resistance of Acinetobacter baumannii complex in a Tertiary Care Hospital in Northeast China, 2003–2011
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2013, 10(4), 1462-1473; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph10041462
Received: 6 February 2013 / Revised: 28 March 2013 / Accepted: 29 March 2013 / Published: 9 April 2013
Cited by 13 | PDF Full-text (204 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
This study investigated the changes in resistance of Acinetobacter baumannii complex and the association of carbapenem-resistant A. baumannii complex (CRAB) infection and hospital antimicrobial usage from 2003 to 2011 in a tertiary care hospital in northeast China. In vitro susceptibilities were determined by
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This study investigated the changes in resistance of Acinetobacter baumannii complex and the association of carbapenem-resistant A. baumannii complex (CRAB) infection and hospital antimicrobial usage from 2003 to 2011 in a tertiary care hospital in northeast China. In vitro susceptibilities were determined by disk diffusion test and susceptibility profiles were determined using zone diameter interpretive criteria, as recommended by the Clinical and Laboratory Standards Institute (CLSI). Data on consumption of various antimicrobial agents, expressed as defined daily dose/1,000 patients/day, were collected retrospectively from hospital pharmacy computer database. Most of 2,485 strains of A. baumannii complex were collected from respiratory samples (1,618 isolates, 65.1%), secretions and pus (465, 18.7%) over the years. The rates of antimicrobial resistance in A. baumannii complex increased significantly over the years. The rates of CRAB were between 11.3% and 59.1% over the years. The quarterly use of anti-pseudomonal carbapenems, but not other classes of antibiotics, was strongly correlated with the increase of quarterly CRAB (β = 1.661; p < 0.001). Dedicated use of anti-pseudomonal carbapenems would be an important intervention to control the increase of CRAB. Full article
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Open AccessArticle How Pleasant Sounds Promote and Annoying Sounds Impede Health: A Cognitive Approach
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2013, 10(4), 1439-1461; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph10041439
Received: 11 February 2013 / Revised: 19 March 2013 / Accepted: 21 March 2013 / Published: 8 April 2013
Cited by 20 | PDF Full-text (417 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
This theoretical paper addresses the cognitive functions via which quiet and in general pleasurable sounds promote and annoying sounds impede health. The article comprises a literature analysis and an interpretation of how the bidirectional influence of appraising the environment and the feelings of
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This theoretical paper addresses the cognitive functions via which quiet and in general pleasurable sounds promote and annoying sounds impede health. The article comprises a literature analysis and an interpretation of how the bidirectional influence of appraising the environment and the feelings of the perceiver can be understood in terms of core affect and motivation. This conceptual basis allows the formulation of a detailed cognitive model describing how sonic content, related to indicators of safety and danger, either allows full freedom over mind-states or forces the activation of a vigilance function with associated arousal. The model leads to a number of detailed predictions that can be used to provide existing soundscape approaches with a solid cognitive science foundation that may lead to novel approaches to soundscape design. These will take into account that louder sounds typically contribute to distal situational awareness while subtle environmental sounds provide proximal situational awareness. The role of safety indicators, mediated by proximal situational awareness and subtle sounds, should become more important in future soundscape research. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Annoyance and Worry in a Petrochemical Industrial Area—Prevalence, Time Trends and Risk Indicators
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2013, 10(4), 1418-1438; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph10041418
Received: 15 February 2013 / Revised: 18 March 2013 / Accepted: 21 March 2013 / Published: 3 April 2013
Cited by 10 | PDF Full-text (897 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
In 1992, 1998, and 2006, questionnaires were sent to stratified samples of residents aged 18–75 years living near petrochemical industries (n = 600–800 people on each occasion) and in a control area (n = 200–1,000). The aims were to estimate the long-term prevalence
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In 1992, 1998, and 2006, questionnaires were sent to stratified samples of residents aged 18–75 years living near petrochemical industries (n = 600–800 people on each occasion) and in a control area (n = 200–1,000). The aims were to estimate the long-term prevalence and change over time of annoyance caused by industrial odour, industrial noise, and worries about possible health effects, and to identify risk indicators. In 2006, 20% were annoyed by industrial odour, 27% by industrial noise (1–4% in the control area), and 40–50% were worried about health effects or industrial accidents (10–20% in the control area). Multiple logistic regression analyses revealed significantly lower prevalence of odour annoyance in 1998 and 2006 than in 1992, while industrial noise annoyance increased significantly over time. The prevalence of worry remained constant. Risk of odour annoyance increased with female sex, worry of health effects, annoyance by motor vehicle exhausts and industrial noise. Industrial noise annoyance was associated with traffic noise annoyance and worry of health effects of traffic. Health-risk worry due to industrial air pollution was associated with female sex, having children, annoyance due to dust/soot in the air, and worry of traffic air pollution. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Exposure to Multiple Low-Level Chemicals in Relation to Reproductive Hormones in Premenopausal Women Involved in Liquid Crystal Display Manufacture
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2013, 10(4), 1406-1417; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph10041406
Received: 15 February 2013 / Revised: 21 March 2013 / Accepted: 23 March 2013 / Published: 3 April 2013
Cited by 3 | PDF Full-text (201 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Background: Liquid crystal display (LCD) manufacturing involves three fabrication processes: array, panel and module processes, which result in different levels of volatile organic compound (VOC) exposure. The aim of this study was to assess the potential reproductive endocrine effects of occupational exposures
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Background: Liquid crystal display (LCD) manufacturing involves three fabrication processes: array, panel and module processes, which result in different levels of volatile organic compound (VOC) exposure. The aim of this study was to assess the potential reproductive endocrine effects of occupational exposures during LCD manufacturing predictive of menstrual cycles as subclinical markers of female reproductive dysfunction effects of low-dose exposures. Methods: A total of 94 fabrication workers were followed for one complete menstrual cycle using daily urine samples: 23 were from the array, 53 from the panel, and 18 from the module work areas. The menstrual cycle characteristics of the study population were measured using a self-administered questionnaire. Urine samples were collected during the first urination in the morning for at least one complete menstrual cycle. The urine was then analyzed to determine the urinary concentrations of follicular stimulating hormone (FSH), estrone conjugates (E1C), and pregnanediol-3-glucuronide (PdG). The results of this analysis were used to assess the potential effects of chemical exposure as determined by handheld volatile organic compound (VOC) monitors and 24 h canisters. Results: The concentration of total VOCs was much higher in the module making area (ND–21,000 ppb) than in panel (ND–766 ppb) and array (58–1,472 ppb) making areas. The concentrations of ethanol and acetone were much higher in the module (1,974.9 and 2,283.2 ppb, respectively) and panel (2256.9 and 592.2 ppb, respectively) making areas. Compared to those in the array making area, we found that E1C (12.55, 95% confidence interval (CI): 8.49, 16.61 μg/mg Cr) and PdG (0.53, 95% CI: 0.29, 0.77 μg/mg Cr) levels in the module group were significantly higher in the early follicular phase; E1C (11.93, 95% CI: 6.21, 17.65 μg/mg Cr) and PdG (0.53, 95% CI: 0.29, 0.77 μg/mg Cr) levels were significantly higher in the periovulatory phase; and all the hormone levels, FSH (1.48, 95% CI: 0.81, 2.15 μg/mg Cr), E1C (9.29, 95% CI: 4.92, 13.66 μg/mg Cr), and PdG (1.01, 95% CI: 0.42, 1.60 μg/mg Cr) were also significantly higher in the luteal phase. In addition, the FSH (0.89, 95% CI: 0.07, 1.71 μg/mg Cr) level in the panel group was significantly higher but E1C (−4.49, 95% CI: −7.90, −1.08 μg/mg Cr) was lower in the early follicular phase; and E1C (−5.16, 95% CI: −9.61, −0.71 μg/mg Cr) level was significantly lower in the periovulatory phase. Conclusions: Our findings add to the evidence that exposure to multiple low-level chemicals is associated with modest changes in reproductive hormone urinary concentrations in healthy premenopausal women. In addition, the FSH (0.89, 95% CI: 0.07, 1.71 μg/mg Cr) level in the panel group was significantly higher but E1C (−4.49, 95% CI: −7.90, −1.08 μg/mg Cr) lower in the early follicular phase; and E1C (−5.16, 95% CI: −9.61, −0.71 μg/mg Cr) level was significantly lower in the periovulatory phase. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Women's Health and the Environment)
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