Background: In 1990, first insurance institution for private farmers in Poland was founded. The aim of this study was to trace and analyse all cases of occupational dermatoses in private farmers compensated until the end of 1999.
Methods: Records of occupational dermatoses compensated by the Farmers' Social Insurance Fund were analysed by a dermatologist in order to retrieve all medically relevant data. Special attention was paid to clinical diagnosis, localisation of skin changes, identified causes of the disease, duration of exposure, and extent of working ability loss.
Results: The first occupational skin disease in a Polish private farmer was registered in 1992. The incidence rose from 0.006/10,000/year in 1992 to 0.189/10,000/year in 1999. Until the end of 1999, there were 101 cases. Women prevailed in the group with recognised occupational dermatoses (63%), although between 1990 and 1999 they made up 48.6 - 51.6% of all insured farmers. Health loss caused by occupational dermatoses ranged from 2% - 36%, median 20%. The most common occupational disease was allergic contact dermatitis (87 cases), followed by infectious skin diseases (10), irritant contact dermatitis (3), and urticaria (2). The most frequently identified causes were plant dusts (38 cases), animal allergens (36), metals (29), pesticides (18), and rubber additives (15).
Comment: The incidence of registered occupational dermatoses in Polish private farmers is far below the incidence among other agricultural workers in Poland and private farmers in other countries. This suggests that the present system of detecting occupational diseases in private farmers needs improvement.
For personal use only. © Radoslaw Spiewak.
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