A Comparison Study of Conjunctiva Disorders in Technical and Administrative Sawmill Workers in Nigeria|
Njinaka, Itiyafa; Uhumwangho, Odarosa M; Edema, Omolabake T; Dawodu, Oseluese A & Omoti, Afekhide E
Background: Workers in the sawmilling industry are at risk of various ocular hazards as a direct result of the sawmilling processes. The aim of this study was to determine the pattern of conjunctival disorders between technical and administrative sawmill workers in Benin, Nigeria.
Methods: A cross-sectional study was performed on sawmill workers in Benin, Nigeria, between January and May 2009, with the aid of pre-tested questionnaires. Ocular examination was performed on all subjects. Data obtained were recorded and analysed using SPSS version 13.
Results: A total of 553 sawmill workers were studied, among whom 449 (81.2%) and 104 (18.8%) were technical and administrative workers, respectively. There were 496 (89.7%) males and 57 (10.3%) females. The age range was 15–80 years, with a mean of 38.9 years (SD 12.8). Pingueculum was found in 127 (23%) workers, among whom 122 (27.2%) were technical workers and 5 (4.8%) were administrative workers. Pterygium was present in 65 (11.8%) workers, among whom 64 (14.3%) were technical workers and 1 (1%) was an administrative worker. Seven (1.6%) technical workers used protective eyewear; 2 (0.4%) wore this protective eyewear regularly.
Conclusion: Technical sawmill workers are at risk of developing conjunctival disorders, which result from chronic ocular irritation. This can be prevented by the provision of protective eye devices in the workplace.
air pollutants, conjunctival diseases, eye protective devices, occupational exposure, ophthalmology, pterygium