The purpose of this study is to analyse relationship between the dairy work load and health status of dairy farmers. Dairy farmers were surveyed for four consecutive years in the Kitakami mountain district at where the farms are located in area of steep slopes and a cold place. Three hundred adult dairy farmers were sublected to the survey for the seasonal variation of blood pressures and blood properties and 25-couples were selected for the follow-up study of serum proteins. The results obtained were as follows. (1) The mean blood pressures were higher levels in winter than the other seasons and the prevalence of hypertension showed the similar tendency in winter. (2) The results of blood analyses seltated to anemia showed to increase the prevalence of anemia in spring and summer, so called busy season. (3) The degree of seasonal changes, for example hypertension in winter or anemia in spring and summer, was found to be greater in small scale than large scale farming. (4) Concentration of the blood constituents (T. P., Alb., α1-Glob., α2-Glob., β-Glob., and γ-Glob.) were increased at the begining of the busy season and decreased at the end of busy season but were considerably stable in the slack season. On the above-mentioned, the author concluded that seasonal variations of blood pressure and blood constituents in the dairy farmers were related to inadequate working conditions and working environments.
The physical and laboratory examinations were performed to 74 cases who have cultured vegetables and flowers in a hothause for at least ten years. As the control cases, the same examination were performed to 54 cases of the farmar who have never worked in a hothouse. The subjects of both groups have been used the agricultured medicines such as organic phosphide, organic chloride and dietlylen sodium bis-ditio carbamate. The examination included blood pressure, urinalysis, ECG, 50 g OGTT, CBC and Liver function test. The results of these examinations were not significantly differed except for the value of cholin esterase. The mean serum level of cholin esterase was significantly lower in hothause group compared with that in field group, although the levels were within normal levels in both groups. This result suggests that some improvement of a circumstances in hothause may be necessary.
The state and problems of health care to farmers in the rural district, San-in, the west northern part of Japan were studied in cooperation with Agricultural Cooperative Associations, Municipalities, Health Centers, Agricultural Mutual Benefit Association and Agriculture Guide Center since 1977. Various features of interrelationship among the demographic, living, and physical conditions were analysed from the standpoint of promoting community health level. In our investigation almost of the farmers complained commonly of some diseases such as hypertension, anemia and lesion concerned with bone-muscle-connective tissue system. The health problems on connection with the community characteristics in each district were as follow; 1) In the truck gardening district, the fatigue, overwork, lumbago and greenhouse workers' syndrom were found in a high rate. 2) In mountainous rice crop district, anemia and fatigue in women were prevalent. 3) In the urbanized area around the city, hypertension was prevalent. High frequency of the discontinued treatment type in hypertensive patients and low consiousness for self health care were noted. 4) In the tea and grape plantation district, lumbago, cervical syndrom, osteo-arthritis of knee joint and numbness of fingers which is similar to “vibration syndrom” were noted. It is, therefore, clear that the adequate, comprehensive medical care program in a community on the basis of socioeconomical characteristics of each district is needed to promote the cooperative activity of health service of administration, agricultural policy and inhabitant participation.
The actual state of high density lipoprotein-cholesterol levels (in part, total cholesterol ratio) among rural inhabitants in Akita Prefecture is discussed in this report based on the findings of our extensive research work from basic statistics to experiments to improve the HDL-cholesterol level. In the basic study, we checked up on errors in measuring HDL-C levels or instrumental errors. Variations during a day (before, after eating), daily variations (five consecutive days) and seasonal variations (spring, summer, winter) were also examined. In actual fact, errors of measurement were not found, but significant errors caused by measuring instruments (precipitation method) were observed. There is no variation during a day. Daily and seasonal variations were significant. The mean value of HDL-C levels among 386 males examined was 57.5 mg/dl±14.7, while the mean value among 359 females was 55.2 mg/dl±14.0. A normal distribution with 50-59 mg/dl as the most commonly occurring values was shown in the frequency table for both sexes. By body build, obese persons, both male and female, showed significantly lower levels than the standard value. Geographical variations did not make any significant difference in the HDL-C level. However, the levels for those who engage in hard labor were high. By type of disease, the group of healthy, normal persons showed higher HDL-C levels than the groups of hypertension, cerebral apoplexy, hypercholesterolemia, hypertriglyceridemia, ischemic heart disease, liver ailment and anemia. There was no significant differential between the healthy normal group and the diabetes group. Retinal and electrocardiographical findings revealed that the normal group has higher levels than the abnormal group. It was also found that the HDL-C level has positive correlation with GOT and negative correlation with the triglyceride value. The HDL-C level was the highest among those who drink sake and do not smoke cigarettes, and the lowest among those who smoke but do not drink sake. The difference was significant. Linkings for coffee, juice and sweets did not affect the HDL-C level. A study was made of the changes in HDL-C levels in relation to drug administration and exercise. For eight weeks before administration, examinations were made to find changes in the HDL-C levels of healthy normal persons. However, their mean value did not fluctuate. Eight weeks after administration, it was found that the HDL-C levels of healthy, arteriosclerotic disease and hyperliPoproteinemia groups of persons rose significantly. Diabetics and cigarette smokers showed some improvement, thought not significantly. Exercise was rope skipping. The subjects were asked to do the light physical activity for four minutes a day over a period of four weeks. The experiment brought about significant improvements in the HDL-C levels.
Because of geographical conditions in Japan, most of our rice is grown in paddies. It is very hard to work in paddies wearing a prosthesis. The type of prosthesis, called the “DOLINGEL” or “Iron Leg”, are not suitable in paddies. The followings were our research and development objections; 1. To select strong light materials and design for the new prosthesis. 2. To have a simple design which could be cleaned easily after use. 3. To consider the problem of skin irritation on the stump end. 4. To select the best foot shape for easy lifting from the mud. From the above objectives, we improved it after actual use. A summary of our improvement; Aluminium was used as the main material for its light weight. The lower leg was made of plastic for its ease of clearing. Regarding the knee joint settlement during work; The old prosthesis was too unsteady to permit the worker to carry things. So we reconstructed it. By bending it forward, putting a long boot on the prosthesis was very easier. We used a system where by the whole lower leg section can be changed by a “one touch” prosedure. We put rubber on the sole to prevent slipping. We put a belt on the affected side. Its design is the result of our experiments and of actual field use.
Paddy field dermatitis was raging among inhabitants in an area nearthe mouth of the Kiso River around 1968. Kumada et al.(1970) attributed the occurrence of the skin disease to the cercariae of an avian species of schistosomiasis parasite whose intermediate host is Austropeplea ollula. The prevalence of this parasitic disease has subsided for a while, but in recent years it has been ascertained that the number of patients afflicted with the cercariae is on the rise. In this report, we will try to probe into the actual status of the occurrence of paddy field dermatitis in the area in recent years. A questionnaire survey was conducted on a total of 876 households in 24 sections of the infected area during the three-year period from 1976 to 1978. Questionnaires were recovered from 785 households (89.6%) and 3, 786 persons, who are engaged in farm work. Effective replies were obtained from 570 households (65.1%). The results of our survey revealed that the number of persons suffered from paddy field dermatitis during the period was 157 (disease rate: 4.15%), of which surprisingly as high as 72.6 percent had not visited hospitals and clinics. By age, nine 'persons (1.9%) among the respondents in their 20's said they have contracted the skin disease, while among those in their 40's as many as 59 persons (4.8%) said they have been attacked by the parasite. A significant difference in the infection rate was found between male (4.86%) and female (3.38%). Our survey also found that the skin disease more often than not breaks out between the middle of April and the last third of June, particularly between the last third of May and the middle of June, when weeding work is conducted. It was also observed that the symptomes of the dermatitis persist longer as the number of infections increases. Another significant difference in the infection rate was found between farmers who raise a second crop and those who do not. Fifty-three of the 192 winter crop raisers contracted the disease (27.6%), while 18 out of the 325 farmers who do not raise any winter crop were attacked by the parasite (5.5%). In the survey, we confirmed that a larger number of intermediate host snails lurk in the paddy fields that are used during winter months than in those fields used only for rice cultivation. Relationships between second crop raising and the number of Austropeplea ollula between the visit of wild birds carrying the parasite and the incidence of the disease will be reported later, along with the result of surveys of overwintering of the disease-transmitting snails.
Noise exposure levels of 40 cases of farmers were measured by use of the equivalent sound level meters (Rion EQ-04). Legs during all over the day ranged from 74.3 dB-A to 89.3 dB-A. It can be seen that noise exposure levels during all over the day were mostly determined by amounts of the sound energy exposed by agricultural works. Most of farmers were exposed high level of noise in their home, and even in rest times. Legs during the agricultural work ranged from 70.4 to 100.6 dB-A, being attributed by agricultural machinary noise. Legs measured in the present study were compared with the criterion for noise of the Environmental Protection Agency, U. S. and discussed from the viewpoint of hygiene.
Phosvel is an organophosphorus pesticide known to produce delayed neurotoxicity. In our earlier investigation, the neurotoxicity was greater in hens which fasted for two weeks than in those which were normally or force fed for some weeks. This suggested a relationship between the sensitivity to the neurotoxicity of phosvel and the amount of adipose tissue of animals receiving this compound. In this study, neurotoxicity levels in five groups of hens, each fasted for different duration (3, 6, 9, 12 and 15 days) before administration of phosvel, were compared with normally fed hens. The results are as follows; 1. A single oral dose of phosvel was administered to each hen at the rate of 250 mg/kg body weight. 2. There were no abnormal hens in the fed group or the ‘3 days fasting’ group. 3. In the ‘6 days fasting’ group, 2 out of 5 hens showed ataxia and one of them developed mild paralysis. But no hens died in this group. 4. However, in both groups of ‘9’ and ‘15 days fasting’, all hens were attacked by delayed neurotoxic effect. Three out of five in each group died after developing severe paralysis. 5. One bird in the ‘12 days fasting’ group died due to the acute poisoning of phosvel on day 3 after administration. This was a very rare case in the series of studies of the compound. Three out of 4 remaining hens developed severe paralysis and one of these affected hens died. 6. In general, the longer the animals fasted the greater was the delayed neurotoxic effect, however, if the adipose tissue of the animals was cosumed more than a certain level by enforced fasting, the neurotoxicity tended to be markedly increased.