Industrial Health
Online ISSN : 1880-8026
Print ISSN : 0019-8366
ISSN-L : 0019-8366
Volume 48 , Issue 6
Showing 1-17 articles out of 17 articles from the selected issue
Editorial
Original Articles
  • Yi-Kuei LIN, Lien-Hsiung LEE, Shey-Huei SHEU
    Type: Original Article
    2010 Volume 48 Issue 6 Pages 749-757
    Published: 2010
    Released: December 16, 2010
    [Advance publication] Released: July 01, 2010
    JOURNALS FREE ACCESS
    In this research, we designed a three-stage consultation procedure and eight major consultation items in order to construct an integrated occupational health consultation model that emphasizes both inspection and consultation. The main characteristics of the proposed model include cooperation among governmental departments, combining non-governmental professional consulting organizations, and establishing partnerships with industrial associations. This model has clear active and passive performance indicators and includes technical guidance during consultation as well as the exit mechanism after consultation. This consultation model enables small- and medium-sized enterprises to achieve environmental improvements with minimum investment. Companies that improved after consultation have a mean ethylene oxide exposure concentration, for the time weighted average, that dropped from 7.36 ± 16.88 ppm to 0.76 ± 1.35 ppm (p<0.01). In addition, the overall company compliant item ratio for regulations increased from 34.1% to 89.7%. The above results demonstrate the integrated occupational health consultation model assists small- and medium-sized enterprises in reducing exposure concentrations at operational sites. Our results further demonstrate the feasibility of successfully implementing the proposed consultation model within Taiwan's medical supply manufacturing industry.
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  • Mitsuru KAKINUMA, Masaya TAKAHASHI, Noritada KATO, Yutaka ARATAKE, May ...
    Type: Original Article
    2010 Volume 48 Issue 6 Pages 758-765
    Published: 2010
    Released: December 16, 2010
    [Advance publication] Released: July 01, 2010
    JOURNALS FREE ACCESS
    To investigate the effects of sleep hygiene education for workers of an information technology (IT) company, we conducted a controlled clinical trial providing 581 workers one-hour sleep hygiene education. The contents of the sleep hygiene education program were a review of sleep habits, provide sleep hygiene education, and the establishment of sleep habit goals. A self-report questionnaire was used to measure outcomes including the Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index (PSQI), Karolinska Sleepiness Scale (KSS), Checklist Individual Strength (CIS), Center for Epidemiologic Studies for Depression (CES-D), and mean sleep duration on weekdays before and 4 wk after the intervention. A total of 391 participants were included in the analysis, with 214 participants in the sleep hygiene education group and 177 in the waiting list group. KSS score at 2 P.M. decreased by 0.42 points in the sleep hygiene education group, but increased by 0.08 points in the waiting list group, showing a significant effect size of 0.50 (95%CI, -0.97 to -0.04, p<0.05). PSQI score also improved, but the inter-group difference was not statically significant. The present study provides preliminary evidence that brief sleep hygiene education may improve afternoon sleepiness at work, but not sleep at night for IT workers.
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  • Akihito SHIMAZU, Arnold B. BAKKER, Evangelia DEMEROUTI, Maria C.W. PEE ...
    Type: Original Article
    2010 Volume 48 Issue 6 Pages 766-774
    Published: 2010
    Released: December 16, 2010
    [Advance publication] Released: July 01, 2010
    JOURNALS FREE ACCESS
    The aim of the present study was to examine how job and home demands are related to psychological distress in a sample of Japanese working parents with preschool children (n=196). We expected that job and home demands are partially related to psychological distress through work-to-family conflict (WFC) and family-to-work conflict (FWC), respectively. Structural equation modeling showed that, as expected, home demands were partially related to psychological distress, both directly and indirectly through FWC. In contrast, job demands were only directly related to psychological distress. The differences between the roles of FWC and WFC are discussed using identity theory.
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  • Katsutoshi TANAKA, Tempei OTSUBO, Mika TANAKA, Akiko KAKU, Nao NISHINO ...
    Type: Original Article
    2010 Volume 48 Issue 6 Pages 775-782
    Published: 2010
    Released: December 16, 2010
    [Advance publication] Released: July 01, 2010
    JOURNALS FREE ACCESS
    Near miss-based analysis has been recently suggested to be more important in the medical field than focusing on adverse events, as in the industrial field. To validate the utility of near miss-based analysis in the medical fields, we investigated whether or not predictors of near misses and adverse events were similar among nurses at teaching hospitals. Of the 1,860 nurses approached, 1,737 (93.4%) were included in the final analysis. Potential predictors provided for analysis included gender, age, years of nursing experience, frequency of alcohol consumption, work place, ward rotation, frequency of night shifts, sleepiness during work, frequency of feeling unskilled, nurses' job stressors, working conditions, and depression. Variables for multivariate analysis were determined by bivariable analysis. Ordinal logistic analysis showed that predictors of near misses and adverse events were markedly similar. Parameters that were significantly related to both near misses and adverse events were years of experience, frequency of night shifts, internal ward, and time pressure (p<0.05 for all). The present study suggested that there was a negligible difference between choosing near miss- or adverse event-based analysis when identifying possible causes of adverse events in the medical field.
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  • Shigetoshi AISO, Kazunori YAMAZAKI, Yumi UMEDA, Masumi ASAKURA, Tatsuy ...
    Type: Original Article
    2010 Volume 48 Issue 6 Pages 783-795
    Published: 2010
    Released: December 16, 2010
    [Advance publication] Released: July 01, 2010
    JOURNALS FREE ACCESS
    In order to assess pulmonary toxicity of multiwall carbon nanotubes (MWCNT), male F344 rats were intratracheally instilled with MWCNT suspension at a dose of 40 or 160 μg/head or α-quartz particles as a positive control at a dose of 160 μg/head and sacrificed for lung histopathology and bronchoalveolar lavage (BAL) fluid analyses on Day 1, 7, 28 or 91 after instillation. Well-dispersed MWCNT brought about dose- or time-dependent changes in lung weight, total proteins, albumin, lactate dehydrogenase and alkaline phosphatase in the BAL fluid, and pulmonary lesions including inflammation, Type II cell hyperplasia, microgranulomas and fibrosis. Phagocytosed and free forms of MWCNT were found in both bronchiolar and alveolar spaces. MWCNT deposition in the bronchus-associated lymphoid tissue gradually increased after instillation. Persistent infiltration of macrophages, transient infiltration of inflammatory cells primarily composed of neutrophils, microgranulomas associated with macrophages engulfing MWCNT, Type II cell hyperplasia and fibrosis with alveolar wall thickening as well as number of multinucleated alveolar macrophages increased dose-dependently. The MWCNT-induced lesions were more potent on Day 91 than the α-quartz-induced ones at an equal mass dose. The present results for intratracheally instilled MWCNT were extrapolated to potential inhalation exposure of humans to MWCNT at workplaces based on several assumptions.
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  • Junji KATSUHIRA, Syun YAMASAKI, Sumiko YAMAMOTO, Hitoshi MARUYAMA
    Type: Original Article
    2010 Volume 48 Issue 6 Pages 796-803
    Published: 2010
    Released: December 16, 2010
    [Advance publication] Released: July 01, 2010
    JOURNALS FREE ACCESS
    The purpose of this study was to examine the effects of general principles of person transfer techniques specifically on the low back joint extension moment. These effects were examined by the following measurable quantitative parameters: 1) trunk bending angle, 2) knee flexion angle, 3) distance between the centers of gravity (COGs) of the caregiver and patient, representing the distance between the caregiver and patient, and 4) the vertical component of the ground reaction force representing the amount of the weight-bearing load on the caregiver's low back during transfers with and without assistive devices. Twenty students each took the role of caregiver, and one healthy adult simulated a patient. The participants performed three different transfer tasks: without any assistive device, with the patient wearing a low back belt, and with the caregiver using a transfer board. We found that the distance between the COGs and the vertical component of the ground reaction force, but not the trunk bending and knee flexion angles, were the variables that affected the low back joint extension moment. Our results suggest that the general principle of decreasing the distance between COGs is most effective for decreasing the low back joint extension moment during transfers under all conditions.
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  • Siri WAAGE, Magnus ODEEN, Bjørn BJORVATN, Hege R. ERIKSEN, Holger ...
    Type: Original Article
    2010 Volume 48 Issue 6 Pages 804-810
    Published: 2010
    Released: December 16, 2010
    [Advance publication] Released: July 01, 2010
    JOURNALS FREE ACCESS
    The aim of this study was to investigate self-reported health effects of extended work hours (10 h on/14 h off) for 21 d at work/21 d off, for 40 male tunnel workers in an Arctic area. A questionnaire obtaining information about demographics and subjective health complaints (SHC), including musculoskeletal, pseudoneurological, gastrointestinal, allergic, and flu-like complaints the last thirty days was distributed on day 14 of a work period. In addition questions on coping, psychological job demands, control, and social support were asked. The questionnaire was repeated three times during a nine months observation period. Twenty-six workers completed all three questionnaires. The prevalence of subjective health complaints did not change during the observation period. The prevalence of subjective health complaints was the same or lower than in a control group. There was a slight increase in self-reported job demands during the observation period. Coping, job control, and social support from colleagues and management were reported high and did not change. No association between this type of long work hours and changes in self-reported health was found in this study. However, this might have been a selected group of workers, and the same results may not be found in another population.
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  • Mayumi ARIMURA, Makoto IMAI, Masako OKAWA, Toshimasa FUJIMURA, Naoto Y ...
    Type: Original Article
    2010 Volume 48 Issue 6 Pages 811-817
    Published: 2010
    Released: December 16, 2010
    [Advance publication] Released: July 01, 2010
    JOURNALS FREE ACCESS
    Medical error involving nurses is a critical issue since nurses' actions will have a direct and often significant effect on the prognosis of their patients. To investigate the significance of nurse health in Japan and its potential impact on patient services, a questionnaire-based survey amongst nurses working in hospitals was conducted, with the specific purpose of examining the relationship between shift work, mental health and self-reported medical errors. Multivariate analysis revealed significant associations between the shift work system, General Health Questionnaire (GHQ) scores and nurse errors: the odds ratios for shift system and GHQ were 2.1 and 1.1, respectively. It was confirmed that both sleep and mental health status among hospital nurses were relatively poor, and that shift work and poor mental health were significant factors contributing to medical errors.
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  • Marjon D.F. VAN EIJSDEN-BESSELING, Antonius VAN ATTEKUM, Rob A. DE BIE ...
    Type: Original Article
    2010 Volume 48 Issue 6 Pages 818-823
    Published: 2010
    Released: December 16, 2010
    [Advance publication] Released: July 01, 2010
    JOURNALS FREE ACCESS
    In computer workers psychological factors and physical fitness may play an important role in the onset and course of non-specific work-related upper limb disorders (WRULD) beyond socio-demographic factors. Based on our experiences in daily practice we assumed that pain catastrophizing and other psychological variables such as perfectionism, anxiety state and trait, and low physical fitness, are possibly associated with the occurrence of WRULD. We aim to study the association between pain catastrophizing, perfectionism, anxiety (state and trait), physical fitness, sex and level of education and the occurrence of WRULD, controlling for age as a confounder. Eighty-eight computer workers with early non-specific WRULD, who had been recruited for an intervention study, were compared with 31 healthy computer workers (controls) recruited from different departments of a university. This cross-sectional case-control study examined the influence of aforementioned variables on WRULD by means of logistic regression analyses. Among the different predictor variables investigated, pain catastrophizing (OR=1.37; 95%CI 1.17-1.59) and lower physical fitness had a positive relationship with WRULD (OR=0.65; 95%CI 0.48-0.87). According to this study, pain catastrophizing and lower physical fitness seem to be associated with early non-specific WRULD in computer workers. Prospective studies are needed to unravel these relationships.
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  • Rabaayah DAUD, Maimunah ISMAIL, Zoharah OMAR
    Type: Original Article
    2010 Volume 48 Issue 6 Pages 824-834
    Published: 2010
    Released: December 16, 2010
    [Advance publication] Released: July 01, 2010
    JOURNALS FREE ACCESS
    Competencies of occupational safety and health (OSH) professionals have become a concern due to the significance of safety management in the field of safety engineering. The purpose of this article is to identify competencies needed by OSH professionals. These competencies are required by professionals in administrating and enforcing legislations related to OSH in Malaysia. This study used Delphi technique in three rounds of data collection. The benefits of this research approach are the use of experts in gaining opinions without time and geographical restraints. The results show 25 generic competencies with combinations of cognitive, interpersonal and intrapersonal competencies and 33 functional or specific competencies including knowledge and skills needed by OSH professionals. Both generic and functional competencies are also divided into threshold and differentiating competencies that would be used to differentiate average and excellent performance of OSH professionals.
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  • Goh Choo TA, Mazlin Bin MOKHTAR, Hj. Anuar Bin MOHD MOKHTAR, Azmir Bin ...
    Type: Original Article
    2010 Volume 48 Issue 6 Pages 835-844
    Published: 2010
    Released: December 16, 2010
    [Advance publication] Released: July 01, 2010
    JOURNALS FREE ACCESS
    Chemical classification and labelling systems may be roughly similar from one country to another but there are significant differences too. In order to harmonize various chemical classification systems and ultimately provide consistent chemical hazard communication tools worldwide, the Globally Harmonized System of Classification and Labelling of Chemicals (GHS) was endorsed by the United Nations Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC). Several countries, including Japan, Taiwan, Korea and Malaysia, are now in the process of implementing GHS. It is essential to ascertain the comprehensibility of chemical hazard communication tools that are described in the GHS documents, namely the chemical labels and Safety Data Sheets (SDS). Comprehensibility Testing (CT) was carried out with a mixed group of industrial workers in Malaysia (n=150) and factors that influence the comprehensibility were analysed using one-way ANOVA. The ability of the respondents to retrieve information from the SDS was also tested in this study. The findings show that almost all the GHS pictograms meet the ISO comprehension criteria and it is concluded that the underlying core elements that enhance comprehension of GHS pictograms and which are also essential in developing competent persons in the use of SDS are training and education.
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  • Makiko NAGAMI, Akizumi TSUTSUMI, Masao TSUCHIYA, Kanehisa MORIMOTO
    Type: Original Article
    2010 Volume 48 Issue 6 Pages 845-851
    Published: 2010
    Released: December 16, 2010
    [Advance publication] Released: July 01, 2010
    JOURNALS FREE ACCESS
    We examined the prospective association of psychosocial job characteristics with employee job performance among 777 full-time employees at a manufacturing company in Japan, using data from a one-year follow-up survey. Psychosocial job characteristics were measured by the Job Content Questionnaire in 2008; job performance was evaluated using the item from the World Mental Health Survey Instrument in 2008 and 2009. The association between psychosocial job characteristics and job performance was tested using multiple regression analysis, controlling for demographic variables, work status, average working hours per day, job type and job performance in 2008. Job control and coworker support in 2008 were positively related to job performance in 2009. Stratified analyses revealed that job control for staff and coworker support for managers were positively related to job performance in 2009. These associations were prominent among men; however, supervisor support in 2008 was negatively related to job performance in 2009 among men. Job demand was not significantly related to job performance. Our findings suggest that it is worthwhile to enhance employees' job control and provide a mutually supportive environment to ensure positive employee job performance.
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  • Sudha SELLAPPA, Bindhya SADHANANDHAN, Athena FRANCIS, Sabari Guru VASU ...
    Type: Original Article
    2010 Volume 48 Issue 6 Pages 852-856
    Published: 2010
    Released: December 16, 2010
    [Advance publication] Released: July 01, 2010
    JOURNALS FREE ACCESS
    In this study, the micronucleus (MN) frequency was assessed as a measure of genotoxicity in exfoliated cells of buccal mucosa extracted from 110 petrol pump workers and 100 controls. For each individual, 3,000 exfoliated buccal cells were analyzed. The individuals used in the study were grouped based on their smoking, drinking alcoholic beverages, and tobacco chewing habits. There was a significantly higher frequency of micronucleated cells in the exposed workers to petrol than in the unexposed control population. Smoking and drinking (alcohol) habits, age and length of occupation represent significant factors in terms of increasing the MN frequency measured in the exposed population. This study demonstrates that, using MN assay, it is possible to assess the cytogenetic damage in exposed individuals and that the significant increase in the induction of the MN in the exposed population suggests that the studied individuals may be at a higher risk of developing cancer and therefore monitored for any long term adverse effects of the exposure.
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  • Reiko IDE, Tsutomu HOSHUYAMA, Donald John WILSON, Ken TAKAHASHI, Toshi ...
    Type: Original Article
    2010 Volume 48 Issue 6 Pages 857-863
    Published: 2010
    Released: December 16, 2010
    [Advance publication] Released: July 01, 2010
    JOURNALS FREE ACCESS
    The purpose of this study was to evaluate the relationships between diabetes and medical and dental care costs from a 5-yr prospective observation of Japanese workers. The data were derived from health and dental examinations and health insurance claims of 4,086 workers aged 40-54 yr. At baseline, the subjects were assigned to four categories: known diabetes; undiagnosed diabetes; impaired fasting glucose (IFG); and non-diabetic. The differences in health care costs among the non-diabetics, IFG and undiagnosed diabetes groups were not seen at baseline, but the costs incurred by the subjects with undiagnosed diabetes substantially increased thereafter. Over 5 yr of the study period, compared with the non-diabetic group, subjects with known diabetes incurred 3.9- and 2.9-fold higher annual inpatient and outpatient costs, respectively, while subjects in the undiagnosed diabetes group incurred 3.0- and 1.6-fold higher costs, respectively. There were no significant associations between annual dental care costs and diabetic status. The excess costs of medical care among subjects with diabetes were attributable to diabetes itself, heart disease and cerebrovascular disease, but not cancer. Among middle-aged workers, diabetics incurred significantly greater medical care costs than non-diabetics, whereas IFG was not associated with higher costs.
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  • Kazumi KUBOTA, Akihito SHIMAZU, Norito KAWAKAMI, Masaya TAKAHASHI, Aki ...
    Type: Original Article
    2010 Volume 48 Issue 6 Pages 864-871
    Published: 2010
    Released: December 16, 2010
    [Advance publication] Released: July 01, 2010
    JOURNALS FREE ACCESS
    The present study examined the association between workaholism, the tendency to work excessively hard in a compulsive fashion, and sleep problems among Japanese nurses. A cross-sectional survey was conducted among 600 nurses from 2 university hospitals in Japan using a self-reported questionnaire on workaholism, sleep, job-related variables (i.e., job demands, job control, and worksite support), and demographic variables. A total of 394 nurses returned the questionnaire (response rate=65.7%) and complete data from 312 female nurses were used for analyses (final coverage rate=52.0%). Workaholics, as measured using the Japanese version of the Dutch Workaholism Scale, were defined as those having high scores on both the “work excessively” and “work compulsively” subscales. Logistic regression analyses revealed that workaholics had higher risks for sleep problems in terms of subjective sleep insufficiency, excessive daytime sleepiness at work, difficulty awakening in the morning, and feeling tired when waking up in the morning (odds ratios [OR] of 4.40, 3.18, 3.48, and 4.61, respectively, p<0.05). These remained significant even after adjusting for demographic and job-related variables (OR 3.41, 5.36, 2.56, and 2.77, respectively). However, no significant associations were found between workaholism and insomnia symptoms. These results suggest that workaholic nurses had higher risks for impaired awakening, insufficient sleep, and workplace sleepiness.
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  • Mustafa ONDER, Erhan ADIGUZEL
    Type: Original Article
    2010 Volume 48 Issue 6 Pages 872-878
    Published: 2010
    Released: December 16, 2010
    [Advance publication] Released: July 01, 2010
    JOURNALS FREE ACCESS
    Despite the all precautions, underground coal mining is one of the dangerous industries owing to fatal occupational accidents. Accidents are complicated events to which many factors effect on their formation and preventing them is only possible by the analyses of the accident occurred in past and by straight evaluation of the obtained results. In this study, hierarchical loglinear analysis method was implemented to occupational fatalities occurred in the period of 1980-2004 in the five underground coal mines of Turkish Hardcoal Enterprises which has the most important coal production areas in Turkey. The accident records were evaluated and the main factors affecting the accidents were defined as mine, miners' age, occupation, and accident type. By taking into account the sub factors of the main factors, multi way contingency tables were prepared and thus, the probabilities might effect fatality accidents were investigated. At the end of this study, it was found that the mostly affected job group by the fatality accidents was the production workers and additionally, these workers were mostly exposed to roof collapses and methane explosions. Moreover, important accident risk factors and the occupational job groups which have high probability to be exposed to these risk factors were determined and important information about decreasing the accidents in the underground coal mines were presented.
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