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Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2015, 12(10), 12977-12987; doi:10.3390/ijerph121012977

Occupational Exposure to Urban Air Pollution and Allergic Diseases

Interdisciplinary Department of Medicine, Occupational Medicine “B. Ramazzini”, University of Bari Medical School, Bari 70124, Italy
Department of Internal Medicine and Infectious Diseases, University of Bari Medical School, Bari 70124, Italy
These authors contributed equally to this work.
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Paul B. Tchounwou
Received: 18 June 2015 / Revised: 7 October 2015 / Accepted: 10 October 2015 / Published: 16 October 2015
View Full-Text   |   Download PDF [669 KB, uploaded 16 October 2015]


Exposure to air pollution is associated with increased morbidity from cardiovascular diseases, lung cancer, respiratory and allergic diseases. The aim of this study was to investigate allergic diseases in 111 traffic wardens compared to a control group of 101 administrative employees. All participating subjects underwent a physical examination, in which a complete medical history was taken and a dedicated allergological questionnaire administered. Spirometry, Specific IgE dosage (RAST) and skin prick tests (SPT) were done. Diagnostic investigations such as the nasal cytology, a specific nasal provocation test and rhinomanometry were also performed. Statistical analyses were performed using STATA version 11. The percentage of subjects with a diagnosis of allergy was higher in the exposed workers than in the controls. As regards the clinical tests, the positivity was higher for the group of exposed subjects. Among the exposed workers, those who worked on foot or motorcycle had a higher positivity in clinical trials compared to the traffic wardens who used the car. Our study showed a higher percentage of allergic subjects in the group of workers exposed to outdoor pollutants than in the controls. These results suggest that allergological tests should be included in the health surveillance protocols for workers exposed to outdoor pollutants. View Full-Text
Keywords: urban pollution; allergic sensitization; health surveillance urban pollution; allergic sensitization; health surveillance
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

Vimercati, L.; Gatti, M.F.; Baldassarre, A.; Nettis, E.; Favia, N.; Palma, M.; Martina, G.L.M.; Di Leo, E.; Musti, M. Occupational Exposure to Urban Air Pollution and Allergic Diseases. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2015, 12, 12977-12987.

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