open access

Vol 70, No 2 (2019)
HYPERBARIC/UNDERWATER MEDICINE Original papers
Published online: 2019-06-25
Submitted: 2019-03-18
Accepted: 2019-04-12
Get Citation

Lung function change in hyperbaric chamber inside attendants

Peachapong Poolpol, Pornchai Sithisarankul, Thanapoom Rattananupong
DOI: 10.5603/IMH.2019.0020
·
Pubmed: 31237673
·
International Maritime Health 2019;70(2):125-131.

open access

Vol 70, No 2 (2019)
HYPERBARIC/UNDERWATER MEDICINE Original papers
Published online: 2019-06-25
Submitted: 2019-03-18
Accepted: 2019-04-12

Abstract

Background: Hyperbaric oxygen therapy is one of new trends of additional treatment, especially for non-di- ving-related diseases in Thailand. Hyperbaric inside attendants have to work under hyperbaric environment to provide medical care for patients in the hyperbaric chamber. This study aims to investigate longitudinal change in lung function in hyperbaric inside attendants (HIAs) and the relationship with hyperbaric exposure.

Materials and methods: This is a retrospective longitudinal study exploring the adverse long-term effects to the lungs in HIAs. All inside attendants (HIAs) who worked in the public hospitals or medical centres with multiplace hyperbaric chamber in Thailand were included. To be considered for inclusion in the study, inside attendants were required to have at least two follow-up lung function tests and minimum 1-year interval at baseline from annually periodic examination. Lung function of HIAs were compared against reference values of the Thai population. 

Results: There were 51 subjects with 9.26-year mean period of follow-up. The HIAs showed a significantly decrease in measured lung function in average forced expiratory volume in 1 second (FEV1), forced expi- ratory flow at 25–75% of functional vital capacity (FEF25–75%) and FEV1/FVC ratio over time. The annual reductions in FEV1, FEF25–75% and FEV1/FVC ratio were 22.52 mL per year, 44.92 mL/s per year and 0.48% per year, respectively. The study showed significant differences in annual changes in FVC, FEF25–75% and FEV1/FVC ratio between HIAs and the lung function predicted values for the Thais. However, the results revealed no differences of annual change in FEV1 from predicted values. The average working depths, average session duration and total working hours as HIAs were related with the changes of lung function. 

Conclusions: Working in a hyperbaric environment does affect the lung function of HIAs. In addition to fitness to work implementation, periodic lung function evaluation should be encouraged to monitor further possible harm to the attendants. 

Abstract

Background: Hyperbaric oxygen therapy is one of new trends of additional treatment, especially for non-di- ving-related diseases in Thailand. Hyperbaric inside attendants have to work under hyperbaric environment to provide medical care for patients in the hyperbaric chamber. This study aims to investigate longitudinal change in lung function in hyperbaric inside attendants (HIAs) and the relationship with hyperbaric exposure.

Materials and methods: This is a retrospective longitudinal study exploring the adverse long-term effects to the lungs in HIAs. All inside attendants (HIAs) who worked in the public hospitals or medical centres with multiplace hyperbaric chamber in Thailand were included. To be considered for inclusion in the study, inside attendants were required to have at least two follow-up lung function tests and minimum 1-year interval at baseline from annually periodic examination. Lung function of HIAs were compared against reference values of the Thai population. 

Results: There were 51 subjects with 9.26-year mean period of follow-up. The HIAs showed a significantly decrease in measured lung function in average forced expiratory volume in 1 second (FEV1), forced expi- ratory flow at 25–75% of functional vital capacity (FEF25–75%) and FEV1/FVC ratio over time. The annual reductions in FEV1, FEF25–75% and FEV1/FVC ratio were 22.52 mL per year, 44.92 mL/s per year and 0.48% per year, respectively. The study showed significant differences in annual changes in FVC, FEF25–75% and FEV1/FVC ratio between HIAs and the lung function predicted values for the Thais. However, the results revealed no differences of annual change in FEV1 from predicted values. The average working depths, average session duration and total working hours as HIAs were related with the changes of lung function. 

Conclusions: Working in a hyperbaric environment does affect the lung function of HIAs. In addition to fitness to work implementation, periodic lung function evaluation should be encouraged to monitor further possible harm to the attendants. 

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Keywords

lung function; pulmonary function; hyperbaric inside attendant; hyperbaric chambers; hyperbaric attendant

About this article
Title

Lung function change in hyperbaric chamber inside attendants

Journal

International Maritime Health

Issue

Vol 70, No 2 (2019)

Pages

125-131

Published online

2019-06-25

DOI

10.5603/IMH.2019.0020

Pubmed

31237673

Bibliographic record

International Maritime Health 2019;70(2):125-131.

Keywords

lung function
pulmonary function
hyperbaric inside attendant
hyperbaric chambers
hyperbaric attendant

Authors

Peachapong Poolpol
Pornchai Sithisarankul
Thanapoom Rattananupong

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