Effect of Occupational Exposure to Pollutants on Peak Expiratory flow Rate of Healthy Non-smoking Bus Drivers in the Age Group of 20-55 Years 176-179
Aditya Jain (M.D.)
Assistant Professor (Physiology)
House No. 13 Khalsa College Colony Patiala (Punjab), India.
Objective: The present study was undertaken to establish the effect of pollutants in the form of auto-exhaust, gases, etc. on the respiratory airways of healthy, non-smoking bus drivers in the age group of 20-55 years, by measuring the peak expiratory flow rate (PEFR) values.
Materials and Methods: One hundred healthy, non-smoking bus drivers in the age group of 20 years to 55 years. were selected randomly from a bus stand of the PRTC (Punjab Roadways Transport Corporation) in the Patiala district and their PEFR values were compared with those of one hundred healthy, non-smoking persons in the age group of 20 years to 55 years, who were engaged in professions other than bus driving. Subjects with a prior history of reactive airways or bronchodilator intake were excluded. The influence of age, height, weight, body surface area and the duration of exposure on PEFR were studied. The PEFR test was performed by using Mini Wrightâ€™s Peak Flow Meter.
Results: The mean PEFR of the bus drivers was found to be less than that of the control subjects in each group and the results were found to be statistically highly significant (p<0.005). This decrease in the PEFR in the bus drivers was probably due to their continuous occupational exposure to pollutants, which may have caused an adverse effect on their respiratory functions.
Conclusion: There was a significant decrease in the lung functions of the bus drivers, as compared to those of the controls.