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Occupation and adult-onset of rhinitis in the general population
  1. Katja Radon (katja.radon{at}
  1. Ludwig-Maximilians-University Munich, Germany
    1. Ursula Gerhardinger
    1. Ludwig-Maximilians-University Munich, Germany
      1. Anja Schulze (anja.schulze{at}
      1. Ludwig-Maximilians-University Munich, Germany
        1. Jan-Paul Zock (jpzock{at}
        1. IMIM, Spain
          1. Dan Norback
          1. Department of Medical Sciences/Occupational and Environmental Medicine, Sweden
            1. Kjell Toren
            1. Department of Occupational and Environmental Medicine, Sahlgrenska University, Sweden
              1. Deborah Jarvis
              1. Imperial College, United Kingdom
                1. Leonard Held
                1. Ludwig-Maximilians-University, Germany
                  1. Joachim Heinrich
                  1. GSF, Germany
                    1. Benedicte Leynaert
                    1. INSERM, France
                      1. Dennis Nowak (dennis.nowak{at}
                      1. Institute and Outpatient Clinic for Occupational and Environmental Medicine, Germany
                        1. Manolis Kogevinas (kogevinas{at}
                        1. IMIM, Spain


                          Objectives: Occupational exposures have been associated with an increased risk of new-onset rhinitis in apprentices. However, population-based prospective data are scarce and do not cover new onset of rhinitis later in life. We studied the association between occupational exposure and adult-onset of rhinitis prospectively. Methods: Data of 4994 participants (age at follow-up 28 to 57 years) from 27 centres of the European Community Respiratory Health Survey II who were symptom free at baseline were used. As outcome at follow-up self-reported a) nasal allergies (“allergic rhinitis”) and b) runny, blocked nose for 12 months a year (“perennial rhinitis”) were used. Occupational exposures at any time during follow-up were defined by job title. Results: The cumulative incidence of allergic rhinitis, perennial rhinitis and both conditions was 12%, 11% and 3%, respectively. As compared to office workers, male medical professionals were at increased risk of new onset of allergic rhinitis (Odds ratio 3.0; 95% confidence interval 1.4, 6.4). Odds ratios were reduced in metal workers not involved in metal making or treating (0.3; 0.1, 0.7). For perennial rhinitis odds ratios were significantly increased in cleaners (1.4; 1.0, 2.1). Conclusions: Cleaners and medical professionals may be at increased risk for adult-onset of rhinitis.

                          • adults
                          • allergy
                          • cohort study
                          • medical staff
                          • occupational exposure

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