232 e-Letters

  • Maternal Occupational Exposure and Risk of Spontaneous Abortion in Veterinary Practice
    Chris J Kalman

    Shirangi and her colleagues set out to examine the relationship between occupational exposures and spontaneous abortion in female veterinarians. One exposure examined, is in relation to the use of x- rays, where the authors report in the abstract that veterinarians who reported performing more than 5 radiographic examinations per week had a statistically significant elevated risk of spontaneous abortion compared with th...

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  • Health effects of mobile phone base stations
    Vini G. Khurana

    Dear Editor:

    The timely article by Blettner et al. [1] reports an association, albeit weak, between adverse health effects and a distance of < 500 m from mobile phone base stations. The authors state that this observation cannot be explained by participant attributions or concerns alone and conclude that “the worries and health complaints of people living close to mobile phone base stations need to be taken s...

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  • Estimation of occupational risks from environmental studies?
    Jürgen M Bünger

    Since 1986 cancer events in the Dutch population related to nutrition and lifestyle factors are observed in the prospective cohort study “The Netherlands cohort study on diet and cancer”. Now the data of 58.279 male study participants have been evaluated regarding a potential association between the occupational activity and lung cancer. Present information on 5 performed jobs respectively activities of each study partic...

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  • Carcinogenicity of wood dust
    Heikki Savolainen

    Dear Editor,

    As pointed out by the authors, the ultimate carcinogen in the occupational wood dust exposure is not known. It has been known that hardwood dust particles are much more harmful than those from softwood sources. Tannins are versatile markers for hardwood species (1) and their presence e.g. in the nasal lavage liquid can be used to quantitatively monitor the dust burden at the target site (2).

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  • Reduced Lung Cancer in Agricultural Worlers
    John H. Lange

    The paper by Laakkonen et al., (1) provides an excellent discussion and additional information on exposure outcomes from bacteria and mould. I would like to mention that one possible reason why no association between “reduced” cancer, especially lung cancer, and exposure to bacteria was observed in women is due to the lower amount of time this group may spend “being exposed” (as seen in table 4). However, as noted by th...

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  • Letter to the editor on a recent publication titled “Occupation and male infertility: glycol ethers
    Peter J. Boogaard
    Sir, Recently a paper by Cherry et al. mentioned above was published in this journal (1). The paper reports the results of a CEFIC co-sponsored case-referent study on male infertility and occupational exposures (2). The study reported an association between male infertility and glycol ethers. We would like to describe several critical points in the analysis. These points not only pertain to the research question but also the a...
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  • A Time-Lag of Hospital Admission
    Jiann-Shing Jeng

    A Time-Lag of Hospital Admission To the Editor: We read with interest the study by Bell et al,1 who studied the effect of air pollution on the occurrence of pneumonia, ischemic heart disease, and cerebrovascular disease in Taiwan. They analyzed the correlation between the number of patients admitted to National Taiwan University Hospital (NTUH) and some surrogate markers of air-pollution. In the cerebrovascular disease,...

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    Bruce W. Case

    There are several reasons for questioning the apparent conclusion reached by Mirabelli and colleagues (Mirabelli et al. 2008) that their data provide evidence for the mesothelioma-inducing potential of what they refer to as “tremolite-free chrysotile”. Most of the reasons may already be well-known to the authors. No longer a traditional follow-up of the cohort study to which they refer (Rubino et al. 1979; Piolatto et a...

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  • Estimating the numbers of work-related musculoskeletal disorders
    Keith T Palmer

    We are grateful to John Hodgson for his comments on our paper. It was not our intention to investigate the overall accuracy of Labour Force Survey statistics. Rather, we aimed to assess the potential for error from one specific source, namely the impossibility of meaningfully attributing a disorder to work when: a) there are no special clinical features that distinguish between “occupational” and “non-occupational” ca...

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  • Estimating the numbers of work related musculoskeletal disorders
    John Hodgson

    Dear Sir

    I would like to respond to some of the issues raised by Palmer et al's recent paper "How common is repetitive strain injury?" and the associated editorial by Fred Gerr on the surveillance of work related musculoskeletal disorders.

    The central issue is that of the reliability with which individuals can attribute their musculoskeletal symptoms or conditions to work. The question would be easi...

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