Noise-Induced Hearing Loss in Relation With Vibration Disease and Exposure to Vibration Among Employees in Latvia

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Kristina Karganova & Jelena Reste (2016). Noise-Induced Hearing Loss in Relation With Vibration Disease and Exposure to Vibration Among Employees in Latvia. Mechanics, Materials Science & Engineering, Vol 5. doi:10.13140/RG.2.1.3178.6480

Authors: Kristina Karganova, Jelena Reste

ABSTRACT. Occupational noise-induced hearing loss (ONIHL) is a form of sensorineural hearing loss that is caused by intensive and continuous exposure to noise. It is one of the most frequently encountered occupational diseases worldwide despite numerous available control measures. ONIHL is a preventable disease, however, once the damage to the inner ear structures has occurred no medical intervention can reverse it.

Aim. The purpose of this study was to describe and analyse incidence of registered cases of ONIHL in relation to vibration disease and exposure to vibration among employees in Latvia between 2005 and 2014.

Materials and methods. The data used in the study were acquired from the Latvian State Register of Patients with Occupational Diseases and afterwards analyzed with applicable statistical tests using both Excel and IBM SPSS programmes to compare epidemiological parameters between ONIHL, vibration disease (VD) and exposure to vibration and to identify the association between them.

Results. In total data were obtained about 2302 patients with 2562 cases of occupational ear, nose and throat (ENT) diseases. Out of them ONIHL was registered in 1699 cases (819 cases were ONIHL in combination with VD). Most of the employees with ONIHL and ONIHL simultaneously with VD were males aged 55-64. There was found statistically significant association between ONIHL and VD (p<0.001; Cramer’s V=0.42; OR=32.08; 95% confidence interval (95% CI) 19.62–52.45). Statistically significant association was encountered between ONIHL and exposure to vibration as well (p<0.001; Cramer’s V=0.46; OR=10.97; 95% CI: 8.63–13.96).

Conclusion. In total ONIHL was the most prevalent occupational ENT disease followed by chronic laryngitis, chronic pharyngitis and allergic rhinitis. Statistically significant association was found between ONIHL and VD, and ONIHL and exposure to vibration. Study revealed that hearing quality of workers employed in manufacturing; transport, storage and communication; construction and agriculture, hunting and forestry industries should be strongly controlled.

Keywords: noise-induced hearing loss, occupational noise-induced hearing loss, intensive noise, vibration, effects of vibration, vibration white finger, pneumatic hammer syndrome

DOI 10.13140/RG.2.1.3178.6480

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