ERS: Main cause of occupational asthma in France -- Flour
as presented at the International Congress of the European Respiratory Society
Flour has been identified as the main cause of occupational asthma in France, closely followed by cleaning products.
A new study, presented at ERS, held in September in Munich, analyzed all cases of occupational asthma in France. The research, the largest of its kind to be undertaken in France, aimed to understand who was most affected by the condition and what the main causes were.
Researchers from University Hospital Strasbourg, France, collected data over a three-year period from a network of respiratory doctors specializing in occupational diseases. They analyzed 330 cases.
Flour was identified as the main cause (seen in 20% of cases), closely followed by ammonium compounds often found in cleaning products (15% of cases). Women were more likely to be diagnosed with occupational asthma (43 per million compared with 29 per million in men). Incidence rates were higher among skilled and unskilled workers (116 per million) when compared with farmers (97 per million).
According to the researchers, the highest incidence rate was seen in people working in the manufacture of food products and beverages (279 per million) compared with those working in agriculture (160 per million).
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