Department of Public Health Sciences

A cross-sectional survey of respiratory and general health outcomes among semiconductor industry workers

McCurdy, S. A., D. Pocekay, S. K. Hammond, S. R. Woskie, S. J. Samuels and M. B. Schenker

Am J Ind Med. 1995. 28(6):847-860.

As part of the Semiconductor Health Study, we performed a cross- sectional survey to assess prevalence of specific nonreproductive health outcomes and their association with occupational exposures. A total of 3,175 persons from eight manufacturing sites across the U.S. completed a health and work questionnaire (78% participation rate). After adjusting for confounders, responses from fabrication room (fab) workers indicated a greater risk than those of nonfab workers for upper respiratory symptoms (relative risk [RR] = 1.08; 95% confidence interval [CI] = 1.03-1.13); a dose-response effect with hours per day spent in fabs was observed. Fab workers also had greater prevalence for persistent wheezing (RR = 1.82; 95% CI = 1.15-2.87), dermatitis within the past year (RR = 1.19; 95% CI = 1.04-1.35), and alopecia (RR = 1.73; 95% CI = 1.16-2.54). Female sex, a somatization index score, and smoking were important nonoccupational covariates. Increased respiratory symptoms may result from occupational exposures in fabs; further research is needed to identify causal agents and develop prevention strategies.

Keywords: Adult, Cross-Sectional Studies, Female, *Health Status, Human, Male, Occupational Diseases/*etiology, *Occupational Health, Respiratory Tract Diseases/*etiology, *Semiconductors, Support, Non-U.S. Gov't, Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

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