Fluoride compounds and their biological effects in aluminum potroom|
S. J. Shahtaheri, H. Assilian and R. Karimi-Kia
Respiratory system disorders occur in aluminum potroom workers despite pre-employment medical examinations. The aims of this study were to measure fluoride and its compounds in the potroom workplace atmosphere as well as workers' breathing zone air, examine the blood eozinophile cells count in the workers exposed to the fluoride compounds, and evaluate the respiratory symptoms and dysfunctions caused during the occupational exposure in potroom workers. To achieve these objectives, a study was carried out in 10 workplaces (potrooms) of Aluminum Producing Plants in Arak city located at Central Iran. Through this study, the data obtained from 160 workers (100 cases and 60 controls) were statically processed. The selected controls were matched for age, year of starting employment, smoking habit, and body mass index (BMI). The total fluoride compounds concentration of potroom, mean concentration of workers' breathing zone air at different job positions were measured showed high concentration compared to the Threshold Limit Value-Time Weighted Average (TLV-TWA). The incidence of respiratory symptoms, the number of blood eozinophile, and WBC counts were higher than normal range in case group. During this study, the susceptible aluminum potroom workers to occupational asthma were also identified. Through this study, it was concluded that, workers employing in the potroom in aluminum industries are at risk for respiratory disorders and a continuous workplace monitoring is needed to evaluate workers exposures.
Biological monitoring, fluoride compounds, potroom, occupational asthma