EFFECT OF OCCUPATIONAL EXPOSURE TO VAPORS, GASES, DUSTS AND FUMES ON COPD MORTALITY RISK AMONG SWEDISH CONSTRUCTION WORKERS: A LONGITUDINAL COHORT STUDY (Toren et al, Chest 2014; 145(5):992–7)
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In this cohort study, 314,293 male construction workers were followed from 1971 to 2011 in relation to mortality from COPD. Workers with any occupational exposure to vapours, gases, dust & fumes displayed an increased mortality due to COPD (RR 1.32, 95% CI 1.18 – 1.47), particularly those exposed to fumes & inorganic dusts. The mortality was particularly high among never smokers (RR 2.11, 95% CI 1.17 – 3.83).
Occupational exposure to airborne pollution increases the mortality risk for COPD, especially among never smokers.