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Year : 2014  |  Volume : 55  |  Issue : 4  |  Page : 306-309

Respiratory symptom, lung function and exhaled carbon monoxide among a sample of traffic workers in Lagos, Nigeria: A pilot survey

1 Department of Medicine, Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife, Osun State, Nigeria
2 Department of Medicine, Federal Medical Centre, Owo, Ondo State, Nigeria
3 Department of Medicine, Niger Delta University, Wilberforce Island, Bayelsa State, Nigeria
4 Department of Medicine, Obafemi Awolowo University Teaching Hospital, Ile-Ife, Osun State, Nigeria
5 Department of Medicine, Federal Medical Centre, Lokoja, Kog State, Nigeria

Correspondence Address:
Daniel O Obaseki
Department of Medicine, Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/0300-1652.137190

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Background: Traffic-related air pollution (TRAP) is a major source of air pollution but the impact on health in Nigeria is not well described. Patients and Methods: A descriptive cross-sectional study of road traffic workers and university students in Lagos. Eligible, accessible and willing participants were included in the sample. Respiratory symptoms and anthropometry were obtained from all the participants using an adapted Medical Research Council (MRC) questionnaire and they all did a spirometry test and exhaled carbon monoxide (CO) test. Results: Fifty-nine individuals participated with complete data, including 47 traffic policemen and 12 students who acted as controls. The mean age (SD) was 35.1 (8.0) and 35.4 years (6.3) for the traffic workers and students, respectively. All the respondents were men. The mean (SD) duration of occupation as a traffic policeman was 4.4 (4.4) and a median of 4 years (range 1-25). There was no significant difference in the presentation of respiratory and non-respiratory symptoms between the two groups. Compared with the students, the traffic workers had higher age, height and sex adjusted forced expiratory volume in one second and forced vital capacity. Traffic policemen had significantly higher levels of exhaled CO than the students (1.18 vs 0.73 ppm, P < 0.006). Conclusion: There is a high prevalence of respiratory symptoms in both traffic policemen and non-traffic residents of Lagos metropolis, indicating widespread pollution.

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