Lung functions abnormalities among auto mechanics in Ogbomoso, Nigeria: Clinical correlates and determinants

Keywords: Airflow limitations, Auto mechanics, Lung functions abnormalities, Occupational hazards, Nigeria


Background:  Auto mechanics are exposed to various organic, inorganic and particulate matters as a result of their occupation. Determining the association between environmental pollutant and risk of lung function abnormalities among auto mechanics is important to prevent long-termCem>Objective: To describe lung function abnormalities and their determinants among auto mechanics in Ogbomoso, Nigeria.

Methods: One hundred and three auto mechanics were randomly selected from Ogbomoso, Nigeria. Their clinical and demographic data were obtained using a data form. Spirometry was performed using the CONTEC handheld Spirometer. The personal best values of three measurements FEV1, FVC and PEFR were determined. Lung function abnormalities were described according to standardized criteria.

Results: The mean (SD) age of the participants was 38.5 (11.9) years. The mean systolic blood pressure, mean diastolic pressure and mean duration of the job as auto mechanics were 128.7 (17.9) mmHg, 81.2 (11.4) mmHg and 20.2 (12.5) years respectively. Restrictive, obstructive and mixed lung function abnormalities were demonstrated among 53%, 10% and 2% respectively. The mean values of FEV1 and FVC reduced significantly with increasing job duration.

Conclusion: Lung function abnormalities occurred frequently among auto mechanics in Ogbomoso, Nigeria. There seemed to be a progressive decline in lung functions with age and duration of exposure to organic and inorganic pollutants by auto mechanics. Strict environmental and occupational safety measures may limit the hazards associated with poor air quality and other chemical/physical hazards among auto mechanics in Nigeria.


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