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Human Health Risk Assessment

Study No. 3

Brief outcome of the study carried out as per CPCB protocol by engaging the services of Chittaranjan National Cancer Institute, Kolkata:

The prevalence of medically diagnosed bronchial asthma was 1.2% in adults and 4.5% in children. All the asthmatics were males.

48.4% adults and 61.8% children showed Upper Respiratory Symptoms (URS). Common URS in adults were runny or stuffy nose (34.9%), sore throat (23.8%) and sinusitis (15.8%). Frequent URS in children were common cold and fever (59.6%) and runny or stuffy nose (57.3%).

68.6% adults and 62.9% children showed Lower Respiratory Symptoms (LRS). Common LRS in adults were breathlessness (44.4%), dry cough (40%), cough with phlegm (32%) and chest discomfort (25%). Prominent LRS in children were chronic cough, either dry (53.9%) or wet (55.1%), chest discomfort (14.6%), breathlessness on exertion (12.4%) and wheeze (8.9%).

Pulmonary function test by spirometry revealed reduced lung function in 39.7% children and in 63.4% of adults. Restrictive type of lung function deficit (FVC <80% of predicted value) was predominant both in children and adults. People of lower socio-economic status had poor lung function than others.

Neutrophilia and elevated alveolar macrophage (AM) was found in sputum samples of about 50% of subjects. Sputum eosinophilia was found in 41.7% of the subjects.

Aggregates of ciliated or non-ciliated columnar epithelial cells was found in sputum of 1.7% subjects. Squamous metaplasia was found in 6.1% subjects.

Systolic hypertension was present in 21.5% subjects, 28.2% had diastolic hypertension and 17.2% had systolic plus diastolic hypertension.

Hyperglycemia (Diabetes) was present in 8.2% subjects.

3% of the schoolchildren were overweight and 19.1% children were underweight.

Depression was present in 45.5% adult subjects participated in this study.

Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder was present in 15.5% schoolchildren with a boy : girl ratio of 3:1.