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Article Published In Vol.5 (Nov-Dec-2017)

Reproductive performance in wives of steel industrial workers

Pages : 1436-1440

Author : U. Indira Priyadarshini, Ch.Prashanth, Vanitha Baluka and P.P.Reddy

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Background: Many factors such as exposure to physical and chemical agents, life style, smoking, and alcoholism habit may affect our reproductive health and ability to produce healthy children. We may be exposed to these factors at work, at home, or in the community, where they can cause reproductive or developmental problems such as infertility, miscarriage, birth defects, low birth weight, abnormal growth and development and childhood cancer. This study aims to investigate the reproductive outcome in spouses of the steel industry workers. Many studies have been carried out on health problems, cytogenetic damage but no studies have been carried out in spouses of workers exposed to steel dust. Hence a detailed study has been taken up to understand the hazards on reproductive system of male steel industrial workers, using reproductive performance as a parameter.
Methods: The study population consisted of 260 steel industry workers and 255 control subjects who belonged to the same age group and socio economic status for the reproductive performance. The information on reproductive history including the number of pregnancies, live births, abortions, still births, neonatal deaths, premature births, malformations etc. were analyzed. The study was approved by the Institutional Ethics Committee of the Centre and written informed consent was obtained from all the participants of the study. The results were analyzed statistically using the appropriate t-test to find the significance for the differences in the reproductive outcome, between the two groups.
Results: A significant increase in the frequency of spontaneous abortions (3.86% vs 1.30%)), premature births (3.40% vs 1.08%), neonatal deaths (2.27% vs 0.65%), malformations (1.81% vs 0.43%), still births (1.13 vs 0.21%), was observed in the spouses of the steel industrial workers compared to the control group.
Conclusion: The findings of this study indicated adverse reproductive outcome in the spouses of steel industrial workers. This might be due to the undue exposure to steel dust at work place. Appropriate precautionary measures have to be taken to prevent or minimize the exposure of the workers to steel dust.

Keywords: Spontaneous Abortion, Reproductive Dysfunction, Occupational Exposure, Birth defects

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