Vol 69, No 1 (2018)
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Published online: 2018-03-28

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Prevalence of chronic obstructive respiratory diseases amongst fishermen

Omar Laraqui1, Reda Hammouda2, Salwa Laraqui3, Nadia Manar45, Tarik Ghailan6, Jaouda Ben Amor2, Frédéric Deschamps1, Chakib El Houssine Laraqui7
Pubmed: 29611609
IMH 2018;69(1):13-21.


Background: The objective was to screen and evaluate the prevalence of respiratory diseases and obstructive  ventilatory defects among fishermen in Morocco. 

Materials and methods: This observational and cross-sectional epidemiological study involved 924 men  over 20 years old and with at least two years of seniority. It included a questionnaire and a spirometry.  The questionnaire is composed of four sections: sociodemographic and occupational characteristics, toxic  habits, medical history and respiratory clinical symptoms. 

Results: The prevalence of symptoms of tracheobronchial irritation was 9.2% for cough, 8.2% for sputum  7.8% for dyspnoea and chest wheezing 8.1%. The frequency of rhinitis was 17.1%, asthma 6.8%, chronic  bronchitis 5.6% and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) 4.1% (5.4% for current and former  smokers versus 1.1% for non-smokers). The prevalence was reaching 6.8% among those who smoked  more than 10 pack-years and 17.9% among those who smoked more than 20 pack-years. Among subjects  over 40 years old who had smoked more than 10 pack-years, the prevalence of COPD was 8.1%. The  comorbidities were frequent. 

Conclusions: Smoking was very common among fishermen. Symptoms and respiratory diseases remain  underdiagnosed and undertreated. Prevention and early detection must be a priority in this sector. 

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