A study of the civil construction workers? audiometric profile upon admission in the state of Bahia (Brazil)

by Pimenta da, Ana Maria

Abstract (Summary)
The goal of this study was to investigate and analyze the civil constructionworkers? audiometric profile upon admission in the State of Bahia (Brazil) from1999 to 2005. Methods: Audiometric tests (n=5702) were carried out amongmale workers (age range: 18 to 72) upon admission when applying for severaljob positions in 43 civil construction companies. Audiograms was classified intothree groups: ?normal?, ?indicating noise-induced hearing loss (NIHL)? and?other causes?, and were later rated as to the presence/absence of audiometricnotches. Results: Normal hearing thresholds were found in 3949 (69.3%)workers, 920 (16.2%) of them showed audiograms indicating NIHL, and otheralterations were found in 833 (14.6%) subjects. Although 980 (17.2%) workersdid not report noise exposure, 4722 (82.8%) subjects reported at least one yearof such exposure. The use of hearing protection devices was reported by 2483(43.5%) subjects in contrast with 3219 (56.0%) workers who did not use it.Workers exposed to chemicals totaled 1084 (19%) against 4618 (81%) nonexposedones. Audiometric notches were found in 1684 (29.5%) subjects in thenormal group, 919 (16.1%) subjects in the NIHL group and 774 (13.4%)subjects in the ?other causes? group. Conclusions: The prevalence ofaudiometric alterations was found to be 30.7%, among which 16.1% indicatedNIHL and 14.6% were rated as ?other causes?. Increased age, more than 5years of noise exposure, lack of use of hearing protection devices and exposureto chemicals were associated to the hearing losses found in the sample. Theprevalence of audiometric notches in this population was 59.3%, of which30.9% were unilateral and 28.4% were bilateral. Besides being associated toage, exposure time and job position, notches were more prevalent in the NIHLgroup and in the ?other causes? group
This document abstract is also available in Portuguese.
Bibliographical Information:

Advisor:Ana Claudia Fiorini

School:Pontifícia Universidade Católica de São Paulo

School Location:Brazil

Source Type:Master's Thesis

Keywords:Hearing loss Noise exposure Civil construction workers Chemicals protector use Audiometric notch Worker?s health


Date of Publication:10/10/2007

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