Evaluation of Clinical and Functional Parameters in Female Subjects With Biomass Smoke Exposure
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BACKGROUND: Indoor air pollution and exposure to biomass smoke is a risk factor for pulmonary diseases among women in developing countries. We aimed to assess clinical and functional findings and exposure duration and to evaluate their relationships in patients who used biomass products as fuel and who presented to the clinic due to respiratory symptoms. METHODS: Fifty-five patients who had been referred to the hospital between January 2008 and December 2010 and who met the inclusion criteria were accepted to the study. Data on the place they live, biomass exposure duration, lung function parameters, and arterial blood gases were recorded. RESULTS: Statistically significant differences in FEV1%, FEV1 (L) and, FEV1/FVC existed between the subgroups of duration of biomass exposure (P = .001). FEV1% and FEV1/FVC were highest in the <30 hour-years exposure group. In the presence of animal dung use, the odds ratio and 95% CI for the risk of FEV1/FVC < 70% was 3.5 (0.88-10.29). Subjects who used animal dung and wood for cooking and heating had severe and very severe FEV1 stages. CONCLUSIONS: Biomass exposure can have effects on lung function test parameters. Animal dung use is primarily related to risk of deterioration of FEV1/FVC, when compared to other biomass fuels. Protective health measures should be taken by assessing the risks in areas where biomass exposure is intense, improving poor design of the stoves and ventilation, and switching to better clean energy sources such as natural gas and solar energy.